This is an issue which I really believe needs to be brought to the forefront of working organisations. CEOs and managers are always looking to bring the best out in their teams and use various motivational methods to do so, but is it important what’s going on in their personal lives?
There is one school of thought that states a good manager must know everything that is going on in the personal lives of their team members i.e. their relationships, status, financial position, whether they own a house, what they do on their holidays and at the weekends. Another school of thought suggests that personal lives should remain private and whatever happens outside of the working environment should be separated.
After having managed a team for the best part of a decade, I have made many observations in how my team have operated and I believe that the best way to approach and bring the best out of my team members is a balance of both schools of approach.
In respect of peoples personal lives I do not feel the need to know every detail of what’s happening in their lifestyle, after all what is private remains private and not everything needs to be shared with your boss or manager.
However, work is where most people will spend a majority of their time, thus shielding something which is a secret and is causing distress is a whole different story. Personal problems can cause toxic effects within individuals in a business environment, as people tend to expel their personal frustrations out on members of their team and nobody around them knows why.
This can often be caused by a number of personal issues such as relationships, children, financial status, peoples personal appearances and when any of these issues reach a high level of distress that they deeply affect the individual, then I believe it is important at this point for their manager or director to be aware of situation, in order to ensure that the affected team member gets the caring support they need to work this through.
I am proud that at Cedar Dean Group we have a nurturing approach to these challenges and help each other beyond the issues that come up in life. Thus, this supportive nature has really allowed us to create a family environment.
This attitude clearly allows us to treat each person in any situation on a deeper level rather than a black and white approach, whether it be colleagues or clients. For anyone reading this who is a team leader, l encourage your team to communicate with you, not necessarily about the things that they are comfortable with but about some of the issues which are causing them genuine personal concerns during their working week.