I believe that the most important thing to keep in mind when leading a group is that every individual is unique. Everyone will have different motivational factors and work styles. Some people are motivated by money, while others are motivated by their loved ones. Some people need to work with everything precisely planned out, while others are all over the place and need to multi-task. It is important to observe and embrace these unique personalities in order to be an effective manager.
Embracing uniqueness is a key leadership skill I learned when I was President of Kilusan Pilipino. During my first year as President, the executive board was made up of 14 very different personalities. Trying to plan and coordinate events with that many people when everyone had their own way of doing things was difficult. As President, I had to keep from micromanaging the other board members. Instead I took the time out of my day to meet up with them and understand why and how they were doing things. We were a very open group, which kept us from bumping heads. We understood that we had the same goals and ideals for the organization in mind, but that we had different ways of reaching it. We allowed each other to operate the way we needed to. We constantly encouraged each other by offering help if someone needed and would provide constructive feedback for one another.
The best groups in my opinion are those that consist of people who are all different and can bring their own point of view. It allows the opportunity for new and better ideas to be developed. By allowing individuals to be themselves, people can feel more comfortable and open which leads to better performance, which is why I would like to end this blog with the following quote….
“Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.” – George S Patton Jr., U.S. Army General