Management is all about love. Love for the business, for the team, for the challenge, and for meaning. Ooey, gooey love and emotion. Great managers have love coming out of their pores - they really do! You can see it, hear it, feel it, smell it, and taste it. You may get bogged down by daily to-do list items at times, but overall. you should be managing because you love it. If not, hmmm......
What are Lovemarks?
Lovemarks are those products, services, companies, organization, or concepts that we feel connected to on a deep and emotional level. Even a blog could be a Lovemark. Here are a few of my Lovemarks:
- BMW Motorcycles
- Saabs made in Sweden or Finland
- New Mexico
- Uptown Espresso
- Purple Haze Lavender
- CSI Las Vegas
- Pike Place Market
- Republic of Tea
Managers can be Lovemarks too! Would your employees consider you a Lovemark? Here's what Kevin Roberts said about Lovemarks in the book:
- "Lovemarks connect companies, their people, and their brands.
- Lovemarks inspire loyalty beyond reason.
- Lovemarks are owned by the people who love them."
I think that last point is really important. I own my Lovemarks. There are lots of parallels to management here. Great management is best defined by our internal customers - our employees, peers, and managers. I cannot be a great manager if everyone around me thinks I am a bozo. Conversely, if I develop relationships so deep and trusting that my employees love working for me, this will overshadow many of my skills gaps. Whether I am a Lovemark is emotional, not rational.
Roberts says that MYSTERY, SENSUALITY, and INTIMACY give Lovemarks their special emotional resonance. So true in the workplace, too!
How sensual is your office? How provocative are you? Are employees turned on by the work? You know what I mean - not sexually - intellectually. Does the work environment ooze intriguing mystery? Are people's curiosities nurtured or dowsed with ice water?
Here are a few tips from the book that I have translated to management. They relate to fostering mystery, sensuality, and intimacy:
- Be passionate: Employees can smell a fake. If you re not in love with the business, neither will your employees.
- Involve employees in a deep and meaningful way. Invite them into the business, even the dusty corners and dark file drawers.
- Find, tell, and retell great stories. "Lovemarks are infused with powerful and evocative stories."
- Tap into people's dreams. Allow work to get intimate and emotional. "Dreams create action and action inspires dreams."
- Inspire greatness and excellence.
- Don't curtail the sensuality of the work environment. People connect through the touch, taste, see, hear, and smell of the work and work environment.
- Connect with your employees every day. Cut the chit chat and the boring status updates and get right to what matters most.
The bottom line is that as manager we CAN be Lovemarks. Our brand and style of management can deeply connect with people. This connection will serve us well. When employees are turned on, they are curious, engaged, and active in moving the work forward.
Lovemark Manager = Better Results and More Satisfying Work
What about we introverted geeky types? Are we doomed to failure? No, of course not. Love, emotion, and intimacy can occur in many ways. Take the character on CSI Las Vegas, Gill Grisom. Whoa - now there is a great example of how an introverted geeky type can also be sensual, provocative, and exciting (personally, I find the geeky sensuality, mystery, and intimacy much more interesting). I digress...
We can all provide the type of management and leadership worthy of being a Lovemark.
More specifics tomorrow...