The Type of Leader That Brings a High-Trust Workplace Culture to Life

ANTONIETTE MENDOZA-TALOSIG

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ANTONIETTE MENDOZA-TALOSIG

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In the previous installment of my monthly newsletter, I delved deep into the complexities that rule today’s work environments and how effective leaders respond to these. By the end of it, one thing was very clear: complex work environments cannot function effectively without great leaders at the helm.

So, the question I’d like to throw now is this: what does it mean to be a great leader in today’s complex work environment?

Great Place To Work®’s Global CEO, Michael C. Bush, answers this question through the Leadership Persona Hierarchy articulated in his book, “A Great Place to Work For All”. These are five personas that you can use to identify which leadership level you’re at and more importantly, where you can improve.

1. The Unintentional Leader

“She isn’t really a horrible manager. All I’m saying is that she needs to relax a bit and talk to us without yelling or being angry.”

“He made me feel stupid for asking that question.”

Has a similar sentiment ever crossed your mind? This kind of opinion tends to be linked with the Unintentional Leader. Such concerns eventually lead to people feeling, “I am not paid enough to put up with this!”

Unintentional Leaders possess an arsenal of amazing technical skills. However, what they often need improvement on are the people skills necessary for a leader to inspire and motivate their people.

Most likely, Unintentional Leaders are those who were recognized as excellent individual contributors. But the gap that is frequently overlooked by management is the imperative guidance needed in the transition from being an individual contributor to a leader.

Assuming that high-potential individual contributors will smoothly ease into a management track is a common pitfall that many companies miss. Often, managers, especially new ones, need coaching on how to effectively lead their teams.

2. The Hit-or-Miss Leader

Just by how it’s called, these leaders are on or off, hot or cold, a good friend or an ally to some but not to others. Unlike Unintentional Leaders, Hit-or-Miss Leaders don’t actively hurt an organization, but neither are they actively supporting their team or performing their duties well. They don’t step up as often as they should.

The general sentiment of their employees is, “Is anybody home?” They often wonder if their leader will be there for them or not.

3. The Transactional Leader

Have you ever had the experience of having someone only talk to you because they need something from you? Transactional leaders operate the same way.

They love to tick off boxes from their checklist. Hell-bent on only achieving their own goals, they aren’t the quintessence of forward-thinking or charismatic people. Like the Unintentional Leader, this persona finds it difficult to forge personal connections in the workplace. Hence, employees tend not to be motivated and empowered by this type of manager.

“They get the job done — and nothing more,” is a general sentiment of people with Transactional Leaders. The key to improving from this kind of persona is to ask oneself these questions: “How can I make my employees feel that they are not viewed as merely headcount or resources to the company?” “What more can I do as their leader after we reach our goals?”

4. The Good Leader

This is where you hear someone say, “I stay because of my manager,” or “I’d do whatever my manager asks me to do because I trust them.”

These leaders are consistent, inclusive, and sincere. They are easy to talk to, understanding, and fair – which is why their people choose to stay with them.

There are many “good leaders” that inspire loyalty and performance from their people. But good leaders, although admirable, have a weak spot – they tend to take on huge amounts of work and responsibility.

Good Leaders tend to carry the weight of the world on their shoulders. They end up overburdening themselves with all of the responsibility and deflect from sharing the burden with their team members.

And by trying to do too much on their own, they fail to bring out the best efforts or enable the full contributions of their people. Ultimately, they fail to maximize human potential.

5. The For All™ Leader

“It’s a VUCA world!” was often exclaimed and used by leaders to describe the challenges plaguing the current business landscape. However, nowadays, we’ve moved from the acronym for VolatilityUncertaintyComplexity, and Ambiguity to BANI (Brittle, Anxiety, Non-Linear and Incomprehensible).

Francis Kong, renowned business speaker and one of the moderators during the Philippines’ Top 30 Leaders on LinkedIn conference I previously spoke in, hit the bull’s eye when he said, “The focus of VUCA is on the major landscape [and] expecting people to play their pieces and part. But when you take a look at BANI, you actually see that the focus now is on people.”

I interpret Francis’ take on VUCA vs. BANI as this: the changes the workplace currently faces must drive us to be more people-centric leaders or what we like to call at Great Place To Work as For All™ leaders.

So what is a For All leader?

Who and what they think about extends beyond their team. They are global thinkers who are aware of what’s going on in the world and the entire organization. They dismiss hierarchy and put each employee as a priority.

These are leaders who build great workplaces where all feel safe — psychologically, emotionally, and physically. They create an environment where people can be themselves rather than one that breeds fear.

They foster a culture of collaboration, innovation, and inclusivity which ultimately inspires genuine loyalty, value-driven performances, and growth for all. These happen when there is leadership effectivenessvalues are not just clearly articulated but lived by and trust anchors the organization’s culture. When these are all present, companies are then able to maximize their employees’ full potential and experience financial growth.

For All leaders create great places to work for all — one where employees regardless of their age, tenure, managerial level, or whatever demographic profile that defines them, consistently have a positive experience in their workplace.

The good news is that being a leader of a great workplace is not a function of your company’s size or industry. It’s a function of how you treat the people who work there.

It may sound counterintuitive that to effectively lead in the new world of work that is highly complex, we need to be more human. But the truth is with the rapid pace of change, disruptions, and constant innovations required, we need each other.

The challenge is for us leaders to build trust and maximize human potential. To effectively lead in a complex work environment, we need to be a For All leader.

Be a For All Leader

Our research at Great Place To Work shows that 9 in 10 employees with this type of leadership experience a great place to work nearly all the time.

The best way to understand your employee experience is by hearing it straight from the horse’s mouth — from your employees’ actual perspective. Receiving such feedback is possible with our Trust Index™ Survey.

Join our free bi-monthly Get Certified™ Webinar or drop me an InMail to know more.

Great Place To Work is the global authority on workplace culture. More than the possible multiple recognitions you can achieve with merely one application, we also partner with you in helping you reach your full potential as a leader through coaching and actionable insights.

ANTONIETTE MENDOZA-TALOSIG

Antoniette Talosig is the Managing Partner of Great Place to Work® Philippines and the Lead Consultant for Singapore. Driven by her passion to help people be the best that they can be, Toni started Great Place to Work® in the Philippines with a vision to create a high-trust workplace experience for every Filipino. She has close to two decades of partnership with some government agencies, SMEs, MNCs and some Fortune 100 companies across industries and geographies. Toni believes being a mother is the greatest adventure of her life and she enjoys seeing the world with her family.

Great Place To Work identifies Best Workplaces™ in Asia by surveying over 1 million employees in Asia and the Middle East about the key factors that create great workplaces for all and analyzing company workplace programs impacting over 4.7 million employees in the region.

To be considered, companies must first be identified as outstanding in their local region by appearing on one or more of our Best Workplaces lists in Greater China (including China, Hong Kong and Taiwan), India, Indonesia, Japan, Kuwait, Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, UAE, Vietnam during 2021 or early 2022.

Companies rank in three size categories: Small and Medium (10-499 employees); Large (500+); and Multinational. Multinational organizations are also assessed on their efforts to create great workplaces across multiple countries in the region. They must appear on at least two national lists in Asia and the Middle East and have at least 1,000 employees worldwide with at least 40% (or 5,000) of those employees located outside the headquarters country.

Great Place To Work identifies Best Workplaces in Asia™ by surveying 2.1 million employees in Asia and the Middle East about the key factors that create great workplaces for all and analyzing company workplace programs impacting 5.9 million employees in the region.

To be considered, companies must first be identified as outstanding in their local region by appearing on one or more of our Best Workplaces lists in Bahrain, Greater China (including China, Hong Kong and Taiwan), India, Indonesia, Japan, Kuwait, Oman, Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, UAE, Vietnam during 2022 or early 2023.

Companies rank in three size categories: Small and Medium (10-499 employees); Large (500+); and Multinational. Multinational organizations are also assessed on their efforts to create great workplaces across multiple countries in the region. They must appear on at least two national lists in Asia and the Middle East and have at least 1,000 employees worldwide with at least 40% (or 5,000+) of those employees located outside the headquarters country.

For All™ Methodology

Great Place To Work, the global authority on workplace culture, determined the Philippines Best Workplaces™ 2023 List by conducting annual workforce studies through our Trust Index Survey™ and Culture Management platform Emprising®, representing the voices of over 450,000 employees across the Philippines.

Employees responded to over 60 survey questions describing the extent to which their organization creates a great place to work For All™, meaning that the company empowers all individuals to reach their full human potential. Eighty-five percent of the evaluation is based on what employees report about their experiences of trust and reaching their full human potential as part of their organization, no matter who they are or what they do. We analyze these experiences relative to each organization’s size, workforce makeup, and what’s typical in their industry and region. The remainder of the evaluation is an assessment of all employees’ daily experiences of the company’s values, people’s ability to contribute new ideas, and the effectiveness of their leaders to ensure they’re consistently experienced.

To ensure surveys truly represent all employees, we require enough people in each organization to respond that results are accurate to a 95% confidence level and 5% margin of error or better. We review any anomalies in survey responses, news, and financial performance to ensure there aren’t any extraordinary reasons to believe we couldn’t trust a company’s survey results.

For All™ Methodology

Great Place to Work, the global authority on workplace culture, determined the Philippines Best Workplaces™ 2022 List by conducting annual workforce studies through our Trust Index Survey™ and Culture Management platform Emprising®, representing the voices of over 130,000 employees across the Philippines.

Employees responded to over 60 survey questions describing the extent to which their organization creates a great place to work For All™, meaning that the company empowers all individuals to reach their full human potential. Eighty-five percent of the evaluation is based on what employees report about their experiences of trust and reaching their full human potential as part of their organization, no matter who they are or what they do. We analyze these experiences relative to each organization’s size, workforce makeup, and what’s typical in their industry and region. The remainder of the evaluation is an assessment of all employees’ daily experiences of the company’s values, people’s ability to contribute new ideas, and the effectiveness of their leaders to ensure they’re consistently experienced.

To ensure surveys truly represent all employees, we require enough people in each organization to respond that results are accurate to a 95% confidence level and 5% margin of error or better. We review any anomalies in survey responses, news, and financial performance to ensure there aren’t any extraordinary reasons to believe we couldn’t trust a company’s survey results.

Categories:
These organizations’ assessment is based 100% on employee responses to the Trust Index survey.

  • Small 10-99 Employees

For larger organizations with more than 100 employees, we also use our Culture Audit™ tool, asking organizations to share with us their practices, policies, and programs to create a great workplace For All™ and evaluate the approach they take.

  • Medium 100-999 Employees
  • Large 1000+ Employees

Why do you say in one place your national list scoring is based on 85%/15% and in another place that it is 75%/25%?

We are explaining two different things:
1.  The criteria we evaluate

  •  85% concerned with Trust and Maximizing Human Potential and
  • 15% concerned with everything else

2.  Where the data comes from

  • 100% Trust Index for organizations with less than 100 employees
  • 75% based on the Trust Index survey analytics and 25% based on responses to the Culture Audit for organizations with more than 100 employees.
For All™ Methodology

Great Place To Work, the global authority on workplace culture, determined the Philippines Best Workplaces™ 2023 List by conducting annual workforce studies through our Trust Index Survey™ and Culture Management platform Emprising®, representing the voices of over 450,000 employees across the Philippines.

Employees responded to over 60 survey questions describing the extent to which their organization creates a great place to work For All™, meaning that the company empowers all individuals to reach their full human potential. Eighty-five percent of the evaluation is based on what employees report about their experiences of trust and reaching their full human potential as part of their organization, no matter who they are or what they do. We analyze these experiences relative to each organization’s size, workforce makeup, and what’s typical in their industry and region. The remainder of the evaluation is an assessment of all employees’ daily experiences of the company’s values, people’s ability to contribute new ideas, and the effectiveness of their leaders to ensure they’re consistently experienced.

To ensure surveys truly represent all employees, we require enough people in each organization to respond that results are accurate to a 95% confidence level and 5% margin of error or better. We review any anomalies in survey responses, news, and financial performance to ensure there aren’t any extraordinary reasons to believe we couldn’t trust a company’s survey results.

Categories:
These organizations’ assessment is based 100% on employee responses to the Trust Index survey.

  • Small 10-99 Employees

For larger organizations with more than 100 employees, we also use our Culture Audit™ tool, asking organizations to share with us their practices, policies, and programs to create a great workplace For All™ and evaluate the approach they take.

  • Medium 100-999 Employees
  • Large 1000+ Employees