I saw a sign once which said “I encourage people. What’s your super power?”
Encouragement is a super power available to everyone.
Not everyone will be a Chief Executive Officer of an organization, or be in the C-suite at all. But, there is a CEO role which every leader can wield:
Chief Encouragement Officer
Leaders, you have the option to be an encouragement engine for the people in your sphere of influence.
Years ago I decided to cooperate with God on this business of encouragement. I promised the Lord that when he brought someone to mind, I would pray for them and reach out somehow to encourage them. I use email, text, occasionally a physical drop-by, notecards, and sometimes a quick phone call. It never ceases to amaze me how often my word of encouragement came at a needed time. I give God all the credit.
(There is a side-benefit as well. When we become well-practiced at listening and responding to God’s promptings, we lay the ground work to hear and respond to the Big Memos from the Head Office.)
Habits like this – frequently reaching out to encourage people, to express appreciation for their work, to inquire about them – strengthen relationships, facilitate great work contributions, and remind people that there are larger aspects to their work and their struggles.
Notice I said these were habits. Compared to others, I’m naturally wired to do these things, BUT… most people don’t know how much I rely on my system of task reminders and calendar entries to remind to check in with people at the right times. I make the decision to let the computer remind me, because I’m weak-minded and easily distracted with other urgent tasks.
Practical assignment – do you know things about your colleague’s birthdays, anniversaries, kid events, work milestones? Gently find out, and as you do, set up reminders that work for you. You can help people, too, by tracking sad milestones – the death of loved ones, for example. I don’t think I’m different than other people who intensely feel the anniversary of a father’s death.
Be the CEO – Chief Encouragement Officer.
Whom can you encourage today?
(If a bunch of excuses just floated up in your mind about why you can’t encourage someone today, then… put those aside and encourage someone. Today.)
Adam Smith says
Love this, Glenn! Everyone has the power to encourage others.
Jed Jurchenko says
Encouragement is powerful and thanks you for living what you teach! Although I’ve only known you a short time, I already feel like you are cheering me on. This post is an excellent reminder to me to also pass on this gift of encouragement to others.