I love this week’s question from Daneille. It’s one I have wrestled with throughout my career and personal life (going back to Nursery School, no kidding):

“How can I earn the respect of my team and still have people like me?”

Being accepted as part of a group is a fundamental human need. We want the approval of our peers and we want to belong. After all, with our delicate skin, big heads, slow run, and blunt teeth, collaborative social systems ensured we could actually survive the wild world and have something to eat at night.

As a leader, trying to manage people’s opinions of you can make for some confusing times for both you and your team.

The bottom line: you can’t control whether or not people like you.

Watch the video for more.

You can influence whether or not they respect you. As a creative leader, your job is to help the team align, provide focus, tie everything to a common purpose, and develop a specific outcome.

With this work, what’s more important than being liked? Mutual respect.

Where does respect come from? I respect people who do great work, act from their values, who operate with integrity, who, when they are wrong, are not afraid to admit it. I bet if you reflect on creative leaders you’ve respected, you’ll find something those qualities in abundance.

Rather than worrying about whether people like you, worry about whether they respect you. Worry about doing great work.
Worry about acting with integrity.
Worry about behaving authentically.

Leave the liking for social media.

I’ll leave you with this. If you do nothing else, get clear on who’s opinion of you matters most and listen to them. The rest? Thank them for their opinion and move on!

Now you! What’s your experience?

What are you doing to earn the respect of your team?

Share your techniques with the rest of us by leaving a comment below.

Get fueled up. Do great work!


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