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People First, Business Lasts

While driving home last month, a message on the billboard near my home caught my attention. It said, "People First, Business Lasts." It is such a simple statement that yields powerful results. In the wake of all the layoffs that have occurred over the last several months, these words carry even more weight than before.

As a leader, it is so important that the idea conveyed in that statement finds a place of consideration and implementation within your business, teams, families, and organizations. When people feel valued, supported, and empowered, they often engage their own work and the people around them in meaningful ways. It doesn't just stop there; the impact continues into the quality, productivity, and the service offered to customers, as well.


As the catchy Nike slogan says, "Just Do It." It begins with you. Your humility and compassion for the people will foster and cultivate an environment that can shift how the employee responds. When you develop programs for employees, make it a point to focus on their growth. Ask yourself, "What would help this individual or team know they are supported and valued?" We often don't know, and then it is time to ask. You can't change everything, but you can take steps.

When you care about the person, you will notice an incredible difference.


Leaders want employee engagement to increase. Well, employee engagement is a direct result of employee experience. So what are your employees experiencing? Is it...

Lack of clarity and expectations?

Changing deadlines?

Lack of appreciation or acknowledgment of the work that is going well?


Too many priorities?

This is such a short list. I have heard too many of these reasons that I have listed above shared with me when I work with teams and coach individuals. And it causes a sense of stagnation, burnout, toxic environments, etc. So, again, what steps can you take to be intentional about the people within your sphere so they know they come first?

I want to end by saying, 'People First' goes beyond our work world. Perhaps, when you go to the store, do you notice the elderly woman struggling to bag her groceries in front of you? Do you see the mom with two toddlers trying to open the door while pushing her cart? These little moments in life shifts us from simply thinking about ourselves and places the focus on someone else. In this highly transactional world, don't forget about the people. And speaking about people, if you want to improve your leadership skills or address the blindspots within a team of people, then reach out to me, and let's set some time to talk about how coaching and training can support you.


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