Trade secrets: Manage By Walking Around

Jim Sloan, one of my mentors in life, always lead from a position of Servant Leadership. We've talked exhaustively on this topic over the years.

In my last blog, I shared that Jim told me the two greatest motivational gifts you could share with the people working for you were 1.) MBWA or "Manage By Walking Around", and, 2.) an open door policy.

Last time we spoke about the importance of an open door policy. Today, we'll "speak" about Management By Walking Around or the acronym MBWA.

Your willingness and interest in meeting/greeting the people on their turf (where they work) is crucial in my view to building (and keeping) morale up. Particularly, during turbulent times.  Jim would take 00:15 minutes in the morning upon arrival to greet everyone by name, ask about family, what we needed to keep doing, what we needed to stop doing. Basically ensuring a 2-way dialogue. Who was it who said that getting a person by name is the sweetest music you can make—Carnegie?

MBWA is one of the greatest and uplifting motivational techniques that I know of–particularly when you're growing rapidly. You see when you're growing, your previous "flat organization" (void of layers) begins to add layers that naturally create some distance between the CEO and his/her associates.

If you encourage your leaders to get out from behind the desk (the desk is one of the great protective "moat" devices of all time), then consider this blog a reminder and additional validation of your present approach.

A steady & daily diet of MBWA will create an open book approach with your employees and by extension your business. Often times, the very best ideas come from the people on the front lines.