How to Distinguish Fact From Fiction From Your Employees
There are going to be moments in your leadership when you’re getting information from others that may not be true. Now, it’s one thing if you got the wool pulled over your eyes by some of your employees this past April Fools’ Day—that’s just fun and games. But it’s no joke when people communicate inaccuracies upon which you base vital leadership or company decisions. Unfortunately, sometimes employees will do this intentionally. But assuming you’ve got the right people on board, most will make this mistake simply out of lack of understanding around a particular subject or issue. As their leader, it’s your job to recognize that not everything you hear and read from them is going to be true as much as you’d love to fully trust and lean on them for answers. Learn to distinguish fact from fiction so you can feel confident about the directions you take and the decisions you make. It’s all part of creating a culture of truth.
1. Be In The Habit Of Asking Questions
Curiosity is one of the well-known qualities of many great leaders. In fact, they never take information, data or feedback at face value…they discipline themselves to dig deeper and explore where it’s all coming and whether it’s really likely, legit, legal, etc. They also consider whether the source can be trusted, scrutinizing how information was obtained, analyzed and presented. When leaders get in the habit of questioning and doing their due diligence, it minimizes risk and sets a tone, helping create a culture of truth. Employees aren’t surprised when a question is asked of them nor feel singled out or treated unfairly when asked “for more.” Why? It’s just the way their leaders roll…they delve deep to learn all they can before they leap and everyone knows and expects it.
2. Use A Proven Accountability System
Having a method in place that measures your people’s performance is key to discovery and truth. It demands transparency around their success and shortcomings and is a proven method for gaining insights around what’s happening and what’s not in your organization. In other words, it’s a tool that helps you distinguish fact from fiction around many metrics associated with your business. And if someone tells you a particular aspect of your business is going gangbusters, you can rely on your accountability system to confirm this claim—or negate it. Whether you use The MAP Management System™ or another proven solution, find one that builds and supports truth through metrics and transparency.
3. Recognize And Celebrate Truth
When your people are doing a great job at providing you important facts or if they’re courageously speaking up about important truths, make a point to reward those people and honor their actions. Don’t just say “Great job getting me all the facts,” but do let them know how their activities empowered you to make a great decision or shaped your leadership responsibility in a way that’s better for the organization at large. Make it relevant and meaningful, and this will reinforce those positive behaviors you appreciate and consistently need from your people.
How do assumptions impact your ability to distinguish fact from fiction?