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Good morning and Happy Monday! I’m Monica Wofford and this is your Monday Moment.

We’ve talked about this topic in other areas: People do what they get paid attention to for doing. Today, let’s apply this topic to leadership and with that, I would encourage you to think about who among those you led do you pay attention to the most? Likely, it is those doing something wrong or in need of improvement. Yes?

Most of the time managers spend their spare time with those messing things up. The message this sends of course, is that in order to get your attention, one must, yep, you guessed it, mess things up. Is that really the message you want to send to your star performers? Likely not. So, how do you spend time with, coach, and ,lead, versus manage, those star performers that you have the privilege of leading, without relying on that old adage of “no news is good news”?

If the star performers on the team you lead have not heard from you in a while, chances are their assumption is not that “no news is good news”. They might like to be left alone due to their own internal drive and high initiative, but they also need a challenge and a direction to go in. If you fail to pay any attention to them or give them that challenge, they are likely to get bored and even … quit, but forget to tell you they’ve done so.

So, the first step when coaching star performers is to give them a challenging assignment. Check in with them more frequently, not to ask “how they are doing”, to which you will almost always here “fine”, but rather to challenge them on reaching that goal.

Secondly, make sure you share you are sharing the resources, authority, and parameters they need to succeed. In other words, don’t tie their hands by not giving them what they need to reach the goal or challenge before them.

And finally, when they do reach their goal or achieve the assignment or produce the results, give them the praise that works for them. Praise comes in many different forms, but the important part is to remember that the star performers need it, too. Assuming they know they’re good and that they know you know they’re good and appreciate their efforts is something like telling your spouse “I love you” on the day you were married and never saying it again until years later, but assuming he or she knows that is how you feel. Do we really need to go over what happens when you assume? Suffice it to say, that too, is contagious!

I’m Monica Wofford and that’s your Monday Moment. Have a great Monday and of course, stay contagious!

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