Are you making dreams come true?
This may seem like a crazy question – making dreams come true is not what most organizations do. Even those who attempt to do this for customers would rarely say seek to do this for their own employees.
While researching High Performance Organizations, our team was influenced by what we observed and also by outside thought leaders who pointed us in directions we might not have turned without their encouragement. One of those was Matthew Kelly. He wrote a book about today’s best practice entitled, Dream Manager. His insight combined with our real world observations led us to include Fostering Dreams in our summary of Best Practices for creating a High Performance Organization.
The number of organizations who do this well are few and so are High Performance Organizations. However, to Win the Heart, Fostering Dreams is a counterintuitive and brilliant approach. When organizations embrace this approach, everyone wins!
In the Chess Not Checkers Field Guide, Mark Miller and I wrote about this idea. The following is an excerpt from the chapter on Fostering Dreams.
A dream can change the world… at least the world of the dreamer. Aspirations are a powerful motivator, and every day men and women walk the halls of your organization carrying amazing hopes and dreams with them.
When you think about your people, do you know what they dream to accomplish? Have you had conversations about their hopes? Perhaps, there is no greater way to win their hearts than to help them reach their goals. Think about those who helped you along the way. Were there people who believed in you and gave you opportunities, even when you were underserving? Have you paid it forward by believing in someone else?
Dreams come in all shapes and sizes. Some dream of adopting a baby. Others hope to purchase a home or achieve a fitness goal. For some, the plan is to complete a degree, while others want to travel the world. Great organizations foster dreams through conversations, encouragement, connection and belief.
This idea may seem bizarre, or at least counterintuitive. After all, organizations normally look to extract value from their employees. Fostering dreams is a different way to think. It gives an organization the opportunity to add value to its team members, and when that happens, performance improves.
However, a word of caution… if your only motivation in helping others reach their dreams is the hope of raising their level of productivity, you will never Win the Heart. Only genuine caring leads to caring.
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Make the commitment to Foster Dreams and watch what happens. Someone’s world will be changed and it might be yours.
Leadership Begins at Home,
What do you dream about outside of work?
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