TVH is an international parts distribution company that I work for on a consistent basis providing leadership development. Every time I pull in or out of the parking lot, I see people walking. I quickly discovered that these were employees walking around the enormous distribution center. As I have interacted with the staff and walked throughout the building I have heard statements such as…
“Let’s go for a walk together.”
“I’m looking forward to our walk.”
“What time are we planning our walk?”
Recently, a gentleman from TVH shared with me that one of the executives invited him to go for a walk around the building. His response to this time of interaction was extremely positive. He was so appreciative of the time to reconnect, share his challenges, and be encouraged to work on some growth areas.
Sometimes the simplest behaviors can have the most powerful influence. Walking with someone is a simple activity and yet it has the possibility of having lasting outcomes. What are the benefits of this kinetic connection? Besides exercise, getting outside, and clearing our brains, there are four leadership outcomes. I will focus on the first outcome in this post; relationship building.
This is probably the most obvious outcome. Walking with someone allows you to talk and connect in safe setting. Let me give you some strategy for building relationship. First, turn off your devise. Do not let interruptions interfere with this time. Second, ask questions. I use the WIFE acronym to remind me of areas to ask questions.
W – Work
- What do you enjoy about work?
- What projects are you focused on?
I – Interests
- What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
- What projects are you working on around the house?
F – Family
- How is your family?
- What is happening in your kids’ lives right now?
E – Experiences
- What memorable places have you visited?
- What events do you like to attend?
Invite someone to take a walk with you this week and practice building a relationship with someone that is important to the work you are doing.
In the next blog post, I will focus on “LEARN” as the leadership outcome from a walking culture.