Saturday, April 13, 2013
How Using the Best Practices of Charismatic Leaders Can Help HR Managers Inspire Employee Productivity in a Competitive Market
Edward Brown, M.S., of Core Edge Image & Charisma Institute provides questions and answers about the impact of charismatic leadership on employee development.
Q: Based on your research on charismatic leadership, what is the single most important trait that charismatic leaders exhibit that can help HR managers inspire employee productivity?
Brown: Based on my research, charismatic leaders have a preternatural ability for understanding human nature. I was in a meeting once where managers were trying to persuade an employee to consider their perspective on a policy change. A senior manager who had been quietly listening all along tapped into the employee’s concerns. He essentially asked, “If you were in the shoes of the people most impacted, how would you feel and what aspects of the policy would you change?” Those two questions changed the dynamics of the meeting. The senior manager channeled into what the employee was feeling, which is the reason she was asked to attend the meeting in the first place. Charismatic leaders are adept at getting to the core of a problem by uncovering the nuance of nonverbal communication.
Q: So, do HR managers need to listen more to the nonverbal cues of employees?
Brown: Active listening is part of it, but it is broader than that. HR managers could benefit from a paradigmatic shift that suggests that self-interested, motivated employees will either make or break corporate productivity. The “Inside Game” in today’s economy is all about tying the self-interests of employees to corporate missions. Psychological contracts between managers and employees have to be formed during the hiring process with benchmarks along the way.
Q: In this context, how is “Psychological Contracts” being defined?
Brown: A psychological contract is a mental agreement that addresses the self-interests and expectations between parties within the scope of the relationship.
Q: Why is this doctrine important for HR managers?
Brown: It is important because during the hiring process, the manager carries all the power. The best way to wield power is acting like it doesn’t exist. By tapping into the self-interests of employees as they enter the company, you make it about the rewards for specific performance. As a superpower on the world’s stage, the U.S. does it all the time. In reality, the U.S. can forcefully persuade most countries to act according to U.S. interests. However, the U.S. has learned that gentle persuasion is a more effective way of influencing foreign policy, particularly when the rest of the world is watching what we do. The same is true at the micro level. The HR manager has hiring power, but can persuade a prospective employee that his or her self-interest is served in conjunction with the mission of the company.
Q: So, by emulating the persuasiveness of charismatic leaders in cultivating employee self-interest, HR managers can inspire employee loyalty and productivity?
Brown: Yes. By understanding that the game of corporate life is about getting people to do what they sometimes do not want to do, employee productivity increases as well as earned rewards for all parties involved. Not through corporate good will, but shared self-interests.
For more information on how to keep motivated employees from becoming demotivated, visit: