Home Concepts Employee Engagement & Motivation A Call for the High Performance Human Workplace

A Call for the High Performance Human Workplace

16 min read

DREAM BIG 100 percent responsibility for fostering a culture that invites people to explore the unknown

Many people in large corporations feel they have little power and little ability to have an impact on the way things are.

Something magical happens when I ask individuals and teams to dream something that doesn’t already exist and for which they care deeply. But, allowing people to dream is not a corporate thing to do. It’s normal to suggest goals and explain how you are going to achieve them. I will never understand how senior managers really believe that they will get innovation, something really new, if they expect people to keep doing what they know how to do. Innovation is new territory. The breakthrough for leaders is to stop unconsciously rewarding people for playing safe and thinking that they are more likely to be punished for failure than rewarded for thinking big.

Most employees, and leaders, learn to play within the cultural context that they have been given. To come up with ideas that may need more than the budgeted resources (money, people) is not the normal way of doing things. However, when you give people the room to dream, you create a culture that drives powerful requests to get those dreams realized. Allowing people to dream doesn’t mean individuals can go crazy or exceed budgets without permission. It means that you create distinct opportunities where “the sky is the limit” and senior management is in the boat with employees to be part of a risk venture that might bring about a breakthrough.

Where people don’t dream big, engagement is lower and results less than they could be.

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