A complaint is nothing more than a frustrated commitment. When people are resigned and discouraged, they complain,
blame, and engage in unhealthy competition. This unproductive behavior does not mean they lack commitment. In fact, the opposite is true. People exert their energy only when they care. When they do not care, they simply withdraw, emotionally and/or physically.
If you are serious about organizational transformation, you must answer a fundamental question:
“Do you want to gain commitment from people, or unleash the commitment they already have?” If your answer is to gain commitment, you are starting with the assumption that it does not exist.
Your focus will be on what is missing, what you do not have, and what is defective, inadequate, or insufficient. Therefore,
your solutions will also focus on “fixing” people, systems, and processes.
When your purpose is to unleash the commitment of people, you bring compassion and heartfelt understanding. You seek
to understand how people have become resigned, and you gain an appreciation for the depth of their caring and
commitment. You grasp that people truly want to give you the best they have but they do not know how to do this.
The automatic response to people when they are resigned is “You shouldn’t feel this way” or “You need to get over this.”
But when you understand that resignation is a frustrated commitment, you can appreciate and care for people in a new way. When others know that you understand their disappointment and struggle, they give you their emotional commitment. With this, you can create a powerful and inspiring platform to help people renew their confidence and enthusiasm.
Unleashing the commitment of people sets the framework for transformation. Leaders who have the view that people are inadequate, insufficient, or not committed commonly display emotions of disappointment, anger, and frustration. It is hard for anyone to be inspired by these emotions, including the leaders.
If you start with the belief that you already have committed people, you will avoid the common pitfall of acting as if
something is missing. When you unleash the commitment of people, you have everything you need. The power of your
change effort comes from believing in people and helping them feel reenergized, emotionally connected, and passionate about shaping the future.
To build a positive platform for change, your focus must shift from fixing people to empowering them. To do that, people need to know you believe in them. The only way to convey your belief in them is to communicate with them authentically.
They will view anything less than that as dishonest or false, and you will lose credibility and trust.
You are ready to pursue great leadership if you believe
• People have an inner need to do their best.
• People want to have a purpose, not just a job.
• People want to be fully engaged.
• People give their effort and enthusiasm when they are inspired.
• People produce extraordinary results when they work together as a winning team.