In my 30 years in this industry, I’ve honed in on one essential truth about my job: I am here to help you do yours. When I hire for front line positions I, of course, look for individuals with the requisite skills. I also seek those who show potential to be long-term leaders.
What I look for are behaviors that show strong emotional intelligence (EQ), and openness to coaching.
Why? Because if a person is going to be unsuccessful in a job, the number one factor in their failure is a lack of EQ and inability to learn healthier communication skills.
You can teach job skills, but behaviors are harder to modify. So, look for someone who wants a mentor, interacts positively with others, and leads and inspires their team in the face of adversity.
Look for an individual with both leadership and managerial qualities. These are quite different, but taken together they make for an exceptional employee.
Managers Manage Things:
They balance the budget, staff teams appropriately, and ensure all staff follows processes within the set standards.
Leaders Lead People:
Their behaviors encourage others to follow them. They create and maintain a healthy work culture where employees feel respected and heard. They deliver feedback in a positive way.
A great leader inspires people to improve and instills a sense of purpose, drive, and enjoyment in the work. When that leader is not on site, the staff with boots on the ground know exactly what they would do in any situation.
A leader always takes responsibility for the team, even when that means owning the team’s mistakes. A leader pushes them forward together so that the whole group can excel.
Managers mitigate risk.
Leaders inspire and give people permission to take a risk.
Look for both in any new hire, and if they get the job, it means you see the potential and are going to mentor them on the journey to becoming a strong leader in your organization.
It’s your job to model EQ behaviors. To build relationships with your employees by getting to know their interests, their families, their concerns, and their aspirations.
One important arm of the Q4 training program teaches these critical behaviors that lead to strong front line leadership and overall employee performance improvement.
Guarantee this level of success by behaving in a way that exhibits that you know your job is to help them do their job.