Contemporary organizational stakeholders are constantly seeking inspiration.
However, most managers either don’t know what that means, don’t know why it’s needed, or don’t feel comfortable with the concept. This is completely understandable. Managers have traditionally been selected for their expertise and experience, not their capability to inspire and energize others, to think rationally, be self-governing, and share accountability.
Inspiration is all about emotion. It is being able to communicate a vision, create work relationships based on sincerity and commitment, and instill the energy and confidence to engage and act. To inspire others is a personal investment of one’s time and energy in the potential of others.
Telling and delegating are not inspiring. These communication behaviors transfer information and direct others in what to do. The focus is on an outcome or result and requires no personal investment of time or emotion. They mainly involve assigning or allocating tasks as well as applying experiential or expert judgments to the actions of others.
In the past, possessing experience or expertise was enough to make a manager effective. However, as organizations have become more virtual and fast paced learning environments, inspiration has become just as important in governing others as job knowledge. Contemporary managers can’t just tell, delegate and direct. They must also inspire organizational stakeholders and empower them to embrace risk, be innovative and transform marketplace or organizational liabilities into possibilities. To achieve and sustain success in the 21st century marketplace, today’s managers are required to be inspiring. They must empower organizational stakeholders to be self-directed, accountable, and united in pursuing excellence for the common good if they want to be successful. Inspiration is the emotional catalyst for establishing and sustaining the proactive, adaptive learning culture organizational stakeholders need to maximize business enterprise and human potential.