Is the Human Element the Missing Link in Business Success?

Are you putting profit over people? Have you noticed your business performance business slipping? Even though the latest technology is being used, employees (and yourself) are working harder than ever before and new products are being launched, profits are down and cracks are appearing in the previously strong business foundation. What’s missing behind all the glitz and glamour of the 50 story office tower? A focus on the heart of the business, where people are driving your business and “The Human Element”

“Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.” – Martin Luther King Jr

Businesses “can” show their human side

In a Jan 2019 articleBusinesses can show their human side on Random Acts of Kindness Day,” Michelle Powell shows that performing kind acts for others has proven to increase motivation and productivity among work groups as well as company loyalty. Other benefits of kindness include lower stress levels and improvement of overall mental health. Maslow’s “peak experience” properly defines the emotional and physical sensation one experiences as a result of kindness. He describes it as “sudden feelings of intense happiness and well-being,” a sense of connectivity to others. What more can you do beyond writing a big check to a charitable organization or just giving away free stuff? Those things are good, but random acts of kindness means giving on the human level – sharing a moment of surprise and elation with no strings attached with the following approach:

  • Be sincere
  • Give a reason to share
  • Don’t be predictable
  • Consider the future 

Belong to something Greater than Yourself

Thirteen years as a NAVY SEAL taught Jeff Boss “Why the secret to success is human connection. In his article, Jeff outlines the importance of not only body armour and a properly packed parachute, but more than anything, the value of belonging to something greater than myself. As the majority of our day is spent at work, the cost of not connecting with those around us poses significant threats to personal health and organizational performance. When we’re lonely we’re less engaged, less productive and less creative. If a lack of belonging plagues your workplace, start with these three strategies and stop letting the disconnection cost you:

  • Conduct a belonging audit
  • Leave work at work
  • Lead by example

My blog “Great Bosses Appreciate Others outlines that there are people who have taken a pay cut because they love where they work and their company is doing everything they can to put people before profit. Also, all great, kind and courageous leaders and bosses understand the “human element” in business performance. They know that employees need to feel appreciated. In turn, we are social beings and we need social connection to survive. I think the number one thing we all need at work is APPRECIATION. We need to feel valued and cared about at work. Imagine being part of a business, team and organisation who truly cares about you and appreciates you. Here are some great ways to show appreciation:

  • Say thank you
  • Acknowledge their great work
  • Ask about what they are passionate about outside of work
  • Thank people in other teams
  • Encourage everyone to show appreciation
  • Show acts of service
  • Buy them a coffee
  • Send them a thank you card
  • Send them a lovely email or call them
  • Send their boss an appreciation email
  • Make sure they have a voice in meetings and thank them for contributing

Two of the most basic human desires are validation and appreciation — this is why kindness and courage matter. Choose to see the best in others. Play to your team’s strengths and everyone wins.

Leadership isn’t easy and sometimes we need help. I am always here.

Get in touch today to learn more about how to build leadership skills that focus on human qualities and set yourself up for success!

Stay Kind. Stay Courageous.

Sonia x

About The Author Sonia McDonald And LeadershipHQ

Sonia McDonald is the CEO and founder of LeadershipHQ and McDonald Inc. Sonia is a in demand keynote speaker, leadership coach and advisor, author and facilitator.

She believes we should lead with kindness and courage, from the heart, doing rather than telling and is known for her mantra ‘just lead’. She leads by example in all these areas and through her one on one practical coaching, leadership training for teams and organisations encourages others to do the same. Sonia has helped hundreds of people on their leadership journey to become the best version of themselves and in turn, inspire and bring out the best in others. Also she and her team have worked and partnered with a number of businesses and companies for over a decade build great leadership teams and cultures.

For more than 25 years, Sonia has been on the front lines of Human Resources, Leadership and People and Culture. She has held leadership positions worldwide and through experience, research and study come to realise what it takes to be a truly great leader.

Sonia has an ability to speak bravely and authentically about her own development as a leader, personal and career challenges in a way which resonates with her audience. She is recognised as a LinkedIn influencer and has become an in-demand keynote speaker, starts important conversations.

She is an award-winning published author of Leadership Attitude and Just Rock It! and writes regularly for publications such as The Australian, HRD Magazine, Smart Healthy Women and Women’s Business Media. Sonia has become recognised for her commentary around the topic of leadership, championing the up and coming leaders of tomorrow, advocating for women in business as well as building leaders in small business.

Sonia will give you peace of mind when booking a speaker. She is a proven world-class professional speaker with the skills to “rock an audience”. Her energy, empathy, kindness, sensitivity, and humour will enhance any event she appears.

Phone 1300 719 665



About LeadershipHQ

Outstanding Leadership Starts With You.

The key to success today is Great Leadership. Your leaders lead your culture and it’s the culture which drives your strategy.

We partner with organisations and businesses to grow great, kind and courageous leaders through bespoke leadership development programs and individual and group coaching – face-to-face and online.

We also celebrate and showcase great leadership through our Outstanding Leadership Awards and the Just Lead Podcast.

If you are a great leader or organisation, who wants to be even greater, we’d love to work with you.

Great Leadership begins with us.