Thursday, August 1, 2013

The Best In People

I was recently engaged in a conversation and was asked by a young person, "How do you bring out the best in people? How do you help the people around you be the best they can be?"
Before answering the question, I should have asked several of my own questions, to really gauge what the purpose of the question was. A good practice is to listen more and give little advice. To bring out the best in anyone, you have to be doing your best with yourself. As you can't give something you don't have.

This is a great question because it relates to one of my preferred principles that can be described as the compound effect, as well as LMT, Little Things Matter. Once again, it's so easy to ignore this because things that are easy to do are also easy not to do. You need to be intentional about what you're doing. The compound effect relates to the small, minute things that we do daily that appear insignificant, yet overtime
they create a major impact.

A quick story, during the month of Ramadan, Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset. The purpose of this practice is to develop self-discipline, engage in community, the remembrance of God, gratitude for what you have, to help others, and to practice humility. One of the sweetest things that happened last night, was this little voice and hand that woke me up with a glass of water in her hand, and said "Here, drink this glass of water before the fast begins". It was my 15 year old daughter, Laila; and that moment will be imprinted in my mind for it was such a special tender moment and quite the role reversal. A good example of bringing out the best in people. 

Through my mentorships, the first request I have is that we agree that we are intentionally going to learn new things daily, we are not just going to float through the day. Examples include reading specific books by thought leaders, attending workshops, on-line training, sharing skills, scheduling lunches with people in different professions that you can learn from, volunteering, etc.. This is the value of self improvement above
self promotion.

Back to how do you bring out the best in others, few things will pay you bigger dividends than the time and trouble you take to understand people. Simply begin with an encouraging heart, over and over again I see the beauty and power of encouraging others. It's easy to understand this as you can apply it to yourself. Are you not lifted by other's encouragement? I recently heard a phrase that said change "you should" to "I could", the lesson was: not to should on people, but rather take responsibility and change it to I could ….. The reason we don't should on people, is because it does not feel good.

Bringing out the best in others translates to adding value to others. Doing more listening and giving less advice. Trust is the foundation of leadership and is essential to all good relationships. The Best In People
Your own goal is to keep learning so that you want to change for the better everyday. As your growing, you can take others with you. What new skill are you working on now?

See you next time at a Moment with Manal.