Have you ever wondered why you can provide minor instructions for one person on your team and have to go into detail instructions with another?

We all inherently realize that not all human beings are the same. This is a pretty basic concept that is often overlooked by managers. Consider the differences between us beyond the color of our skin and hair. Our cultural perspectives play a role in our response to instructions as well. There may be language barriers, different educational backgrounds, unknown personality traits, and varying value systems that greatly affect how information is processed and interpreted.

As a leader, part of our responsibility is to engage our teams by varying our approach to meet the needs of our employees.

Consider Suzy who used to work for me. Suzy was very talented and dedicated to the excellence of her work. Then came a short time when Suzy made several mistakes in a row. I came down on her hard, which was a big mistake. Suzy was beating herself up more than I ever could, and I failed to recognize the impact of my words on her self-confidence. Suzy took a long time to get over that incident, and I learned an important lesson.

Jean was a person that really thrived under pressure. The more I threw at her, the happier Jean was. I found that if Jean was not busy, her productivity suffered. Some people work well under pressure, like Jean. Some respond best to tough love, while others take it personally and shut down, like Suzy.

In order to optimize our effectiveness as leaders, we must have the ability to tailor our approach on a person-by-person basis, based on the situation at hand.

Our capacity to execute this concept will play a huge role in our ability to get the best work out of our teams and other partners along the journey. Click here to access Dale Carnegie’s Human Relations principles, which can improve our effectiveness in this approach. 

Posted by Mary Kuniski

Mary Kuniski is an accomplished Senior Executive with more than 35 years of success across the retail, finance, non-profit, and manufacturing industries. She has leveraged her extensive experience in change management, executive coaching, and project management to develop capable and productive leaders. She is a valuable asset for organizations in the process of training employees on operational improvements and leadership skills. Her broad areas of expertise include vendor management, project management, change management, event planning, financial analysis, relationship building, problem-solving and Oracle ERP solution implementations. Mary’s professional​ career has been defined by her ability to obtain increasing positions of seniority and deliver results to diverse clients and companies. She has held leadership positions for organizations including Michaels, Overhead Door Corporation, and Parkinson Voice Project. She currently works as an Independent Consultant and Executive Coach for Golden Professional Coaching, LLC, where she dedicates herself to coaching high-potential executives, executives in transition, and mid-level executives seeking to improve their skills. She also works with small to medium size companies to develop long-term business plans and identify and overcome complex challenges. During her tenure with Michaels, she drove the company’s expansion into Quebec and led the conversion of over 60,000 packages to appear in three languages while successfully adhering to French-language laws. Mary received her Bachelor of Science in Human Development from Pennsylvania State University and her Master of Business Administration in Global Management from the University of Phoenix. She received her Certification in Training from Dale Carnegie Training and became a Certified Executive Coach through Marshall Goldsmith. She is affiliated with the National Association of Female Executives and the Network of Executive Women. While working for Michaels, Mary initiated a Woman in Leadership group that grew to over 200 members and maintained a 30% promotion rate for regular attendees.

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