Leadership at all Levels

Posted by Dermot Crowley on 20th August 2018

I’m going to start by talking rubbish but will get to an important productivity point a bit further on.

Plastic bags are a huge burden on the environment and the healthy future of our planet. This is a big issue in NSW at the moment as many shoppers wrestle with the prospect of bringing their own reusable bags to the supermarket. I reckon for this level of behavioural change to succeed, real leadership needs to occur across every level in the community.
Government needs to show leadership by legislating against the use of single use plastic bags. The media can lead by shining a spotlight on the issue. And, as heavy users, the supermarket giants must take a leading role.

We also need to see leadership at the family level, where we discuss this issue as a household and make decisions about what we will do to help with the problem. Lastly, we need to demonstrate personal leadership, and change our behaviours every time we shop. When we all take ownership of the issue and change our mindsets and our behaviours, a cultural change will sweep across the country which will have a lasting impact on the environment.

The same concept can be applied when it comes to creating cultural change within your organisation. I’m currently working with several companies keen to change how they use email, how they meet, and how they collaborate. This is challenging, as the poor use of email and meetings has become the norm, and many people feel that ‘this is just the way it’s done around here’. The status quo feels too hard to change. But it can be changed if we demonstrate leadership on every level.

Firstly, the leadership team need to get on board to not only support the change, but also to lead it by example. Human Resources need to champion the issues and the solutions. Managers and team leaders need to talk to their teams about the required changes, as well as walking the talk. And every worker needs to demonstrate personal leadership by changing their behaviours and working hard not lapse back into old habits.

Now, some would agree that I started this newsletter talking rubbish, but hopefully I ended up making some sense! If I did, ask yourself, what is your organisation doing to create a more productive culture? And equally important, what are you doing to create a more productive culture?

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