You are wanting to make a connection with people as a leader. The days of positional leadership are over. Leadership is influence. If people are going to believe that the initiative you are taking is for their benefit, they need to know you love them.

 

I am not referring to romantic love. Nor am I thinking in the realm of feelings, though this type of connection taps into emotion. This kind of love is rooted in the character of the leader. It is about the currency of trust. People want to think the person they are following is watching out for them.

 

People interpret love differently. A great way to think about how people believe a leader is working for their good is Gary Chapman’s 5 love languages. Chapman’s teaching has become nearly universal. If you’re not familiar, you can take a self-assessment and learn more here. In essence, the idea is love is spoken, and thus heard, 5 ways:

 

• Touch. This can be physical touch, presence, or any non-verbal that expresses closeness to someone.
• Time. This is about attention, focus, and valuing a person.
• Words. Verbal communication that is positive and affirming of another.
• Gifts. A tangible representation that expresses thoughtfulness and worth.
• Service. An act that eases another’s load, lightens responsibility, and helps.

 

As a leader, you have to study people to know what their love language is. The quickest way to figure this out is to watch what they do. We want to receive love the way we give love. Not everyone wants the same things. Pay attention to people. How are they speaking love to others? That is probably how they hear, receive love from others.

 

What can a leader do to speak love in these ways?

 

Explore this idea more with these links:

 

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