Stress can make it challenging for leaders to connect with people by making you isolated or invisible. Some stressed leaders even drive people away. But there are ways to motivate people to partner with you and your team to achieve shared goals, even as you continue your quest to combat and prevent stress. The key is in how you approach them to make the ask.
Care about direct reports
When you care for your direct reports, there’s a domino effect. Often a manager’s direct reports lead teams of their own, who either lead teams as well or deal with customers. When you kick-start this domino effect, you can spark a culture of caring at your company.
What to do? Caring doesn’t mean bringing doughnuts to work once a month. Caring means listening. Whenever you interact with your direct reports, start by listening to them. Don’t finish their sentences or abruptly cut them off. These behaviors quickly signal a lack of caring. Caring also involves being vulnerable. Disclose an interesting tidbit about yourself, even if it seems tangential to your work.
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