I ran into a good friend yesterday at the grocery store. We were both off for Labor Day. This friend tells me about some advice a colleague had provided just the other day on leadership and management. "The job of the worker" this person had said "is to make their management look good and succeed."
We were both stunned that people still said that, let alone thought it. My friend said:
"The dignity of the worker is so often overlooked in today's leadership discussions. Everything is about the leader setting the vision, but often the workers know better what's going on and how to make things better."
I told my friend about Rebels at Work and how we think of ourselves as a resource for workers. Dignity is often a concern for Rebels at Work, who don't want to lose theirs as they try to get their ideas a fair hearing. Too often organizations act as if they're doing workers a favor by listening to them.
"At today's townhall, we really want to hear from you!"
My experience is such calls are usually met with prickly silence.
"If you always wanted to hear from me, you wouldn't need to make such a big deal of it today."
So, Dear Leadership, if you really expect workers to make you look good, you might try paying attention to them. Hear them. All the time, not on special days determined by the corporate calendar.
You know, they might just help you succeed.