I read the great book Enchantment by Guy Kawasaki (@guykawasaki). It’s terrific and highly recommended. But since I’ve worked for all types of bosses, and I’ve been a boss, I really enjoyed this part on how to enchant your employees.
I suggest you clip this post and hand it to your boss.
Here are some specific recommendations Guy makes for businesses to enchant their employees.
- Provide a MAP
Mastery – Help people improve their skills
Autonomy – Don’t tell people what to do
Purpose – Give people meaning
- Empower them to do the right thing
“Your best employees want to serve and delight your customers. “One easy way to enchant your employees is to empower them to do the right thing for customers.”(An Eastern Region VP at a large BI software company after I told him of a call from a very upset IT manager who said she was about to be fired, said “It’s not your problem. Go sell another client.” Is that enchantment?)
She was not fired – her boss was.Years later I tracked down the fired executive and apologized on behalf of my stupid management. This former VP was thrilled!
- Address your (the boss’s) shortcomings first
Enchanted employees are inspired and not scared. Look at yourself before you look at employees. How many performance reviews have you ever had where your boss started by saying ‘I think I could have provided you with better management.‘(A UK search marketing firm owner believed in threatening the job security of employees – terrifying them – regardless of performance. Is this enchantment?)
- Don’t Ask Employees to do Things You Would Not Do
Are you willing to fly across the globe in coach? Answer ALL of your email? Come in early and stay late? Empty the trash? Make photocopies? If not, you’re not enchanting.
- Celebrate success – the right way.
Winning binds the team and overcomes many failures. So you should celebrate team wins. But don’t be extravagant and awesome, but fun and cool. Touring on a bus to visit customers is cool and enchanting. Having a small software company book Jimmy Buffet to perform for a company party is extravagant. (A product content software company after an IPO)
- Find a Devil’s Advocate
Someone whose role is to argue against company decisions can be a powerful check and protection. It helps a company avoid mistakes and gives employees a sounding board. It’s a great way to enchant.
What do you think? Do you have other examples of enchanting bosses? Or examples of non-enchanting bosses? We love comments and people who share.