Friday, May 30, 2008

Pimping

By definition, pimping is to procure something for the gratification of others' lusts; to pander. As leaders we are faced daily with opportunities to pimp in our lives because we have the power to do so. Very easily we look the other way and make sacrifices, not personal sacrifices, but personnel sacrifices, to meet the needs of our associates. The truth is that we get away with it in the disguise of systems and operating procedures, through subtle requests upon someone trying to make a name for themselves within the very organizations we are in a position to lead. In our quest for success we look less at the “how” we achieved and more at the fact that we achieved.

The pimping actions we take as leaders is simple because it is not our son or daughter that we are offering for others indulgence; we instead are offering someone who through their own naiveté is trying to make an impression. Their thinking is that this person who is in charge of my professional fate within this particular organization would not ask me to do something that wasn’t in the best interests of the organization and in essence agree to “take one for the team”.

In our abuse of power we forget the simple rule of best practice in life, which states that personal relationships are what it is all about. The minute a leader looks at someone they are leading as expandable is the exact moment that you lose all credibility as a leader. Your job in leadership is to get the most out of your personnel first so that you can get the best out of your bottom line. Unfortunately for many employees, the bottom line takes precedence over their well being and their leaders ask them to perform actions that their leaders are unwilling to do themselves.

If you want to see successful leadership in action look no further than employee longevity, adherence, and satisfaction statistics. The leaders that have people stay under their wing for long periods of time, are supportive and believe in their leaders, and have job satisfaction are the leaders who place personnel above personal. This is an important fact to remember because without personnel you are nothing more than a leader of one, a rogue nomad who has neither the ability nor intelligence to see the faults in their own personal philosophy.

The minute personal takes over personnel you make the shift from leader to pimp. If you are looking for longevity in leadership than you better understand that it is as much about the relationship as it is about the bottom line. You can achieve success with the support from those that are willing to trust and support you a lot more efficiently than you can by acting alone.

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