Commanding Respect of Your Team
By Mike Bosse
Friday, March 11, 2005; 4:00pm EST
When I was a child my father would take me ice fishing with him and
his buddies. I remember very clearly the first time he took me out
on the ice. I was so excited to be included in his fishing trip that
I couldn�t sleep the entire night prior.
So at 4:00am when my father came into the room to wake me, he was a
little surprised to find me wide eyed and full of energy. When we
got out onto the frozen lake I remember hearing the ice creak
beneath the wheels of the truck as we slowly approached the small
wooden shack that would house us
from the elements for the remainder of the day.
I remember being concerned as the first �POP!� resounded from the
crystal floor below. But then, I took one look at my father and all
of my fears where dispelled. I knew that with my father at my side I
was safe from harm.
Once inside the ice cabin we lit the small heater in the corner and
my father went over some of the safety rules with me. After the
initial talk on safety, the wooden plank which covered the 4 foot
long by 2 foot wide hole in the ice was removed. One look into the
murky darkness below and I became the poster boy for ice fishing
My father went over the basics with me and then showed me how to
properly drop the line and how to watch it for a bite from the fish.
As he instructed me, I absorbed every bit of information he shared,
and followed his lessons to the tee. I never questioned him, or
desired anything else but to make him proud of me, and have fun.
Over the course of that day I caught half a gallon of trout, and had
the time of my life.
I often think back on this story when I am in a position to lead
men. My father commanded not only my loyalty, but my respect, my
devotion, and I surrendered to his command on blind faith.
As I reflect on the experiences in my life it becomes clear very
quickly why this is. When I joined the military I had the
opportunity to see this exact style of leadership in action. I found
that the leaders who where loved by the unit, who commanded the
respect of the men, and who without question would be followed into
a hail of on coming bullets, where those who the men saw as �father
All men who command this kind of following have one thing in common�
They honestly care about the well-being of there men.
No man or women will follow you willingly unless they know that you
have there best interest in mind. You cannot force the loyalty or
respect of your team. Leaders who care for every person on there
team are, not surprisingly, also the ones who produce the best
results, because there teams care about them, and love working with
I blindly followed my father because I knew that he cared for me and
would never allow misfortune to come to me if he could help it.
Because of this, I also wanted to make him proud. The men and women
you lead are the same way. They seek approval, desire respect, and
want to be lead by someone who is more concerned about them, than
about their wallet.
Give your team respect and care about them as people, and you will
see an amazing change in the attitudes and production of your team.
True concern for your people builds respect, loyalty and great
results. You will find that when you give to your team, they will
give back to you.
About the Author
Mike Bosse is the founder
of www.LeadershipForge.com. He is also the editor for the "LeadershipForge
Newsletter" a weekly publication which reveals hidden methods to
improve your leadership skills in a goal oriented world.