There was a man who owed a large sum of money — $100,000 large. Let’s just this debt was not related to a mortgage or an expensive car, if you know what I mean. He was not very good with money and was very concerned about his situation. He reached out to an old friend who he knew was very good with money. He thought that if he could glean some wisdom from him, it might be of assistance. His friend agreed to meet at a coffee shop on a Friday afternoon. After the meeting, his friend had a feeling that he should help him, and so he asked if they could meet again the following Friday and talk some more.
They met again and talked for about an hour. Finally the friend said that he wanted to help by paying his debt off completely. The man was astonished! This is not what he was looking for, but he was very grateful. His friend said that he would pay him $2,000 per week if he agreed to meet with him every Friday for one hour for coffee. The man quickly agreed and they set up a standing meeting.
The first week found the man there very early and his friend showed up right on time with the check. The second week was the same. The conversations were getting deeper, and after a few meetings, the man found himself growing in ways he had not imagined possible. After the seventh week, the friend brought a check for the balance of the debt, roughly $85,000. The man was dumbfounded, stunned, silent, and very grateful. His friend said that the money was his, free and clear. The only thing he wanted was to continue to meet for what remained of the original 50 week agreement.
Can a man really change when someone shows him unconditional love like this? His friend only wanted to help and continue to pour into this guy who had obviously made some poor choices. Would the man place the value of the friend in him or in his money? Whether or not they met the following Friday would determine where the value lies.
What is it like in your workplace? As a leader, where do you place the value of individuals? On the individual themselves, or on what they can do for you? If there is a culture that values individuals because each individual is valuable, there is a culture of honor present. If you value “the boss” more because he is the boss and you value the admin less because, well, he or she is just an admin, then you have a workplace that does not value individuals and their abilities.
Our role as leaders is to value each individual the same. That’s right, the same. Go ahead and tell the child or spouse of the admin that he or she is less valuable. I submit that as a leader, it is your responsibility to find the best in each individual and provide them the opportunity to grow and thrive in an environment where each person is valued and honored. If you think you didn’t sign up for this when you took the leadership position, think carefully about your role and your desire to be a leader, because like it or not, you are impacting people’s lives. If your current boss does not do this with you or to the team, then either find a new job, or start a new trend and set the example for him or her.