Leadership: Going from "Me to We"

Marv Serhan, former WSU Vancouver Adjunct Professor
Business Growth MAP Alliance, April 19, 2017

An effective leader knows how to influence others’ personal and professional development. As a business grows, the ability to inspire, lead and develop a team becomes more important. Marv Serhan, former WSU Vancouver adjunct professor, calls it “Going from me to we.”

Serhan challenged listeners at the April MAP Alliance forum to identify the great leaders from their past. “We learn our values through observation,” Serhan said, stating that through the power of example, good or bad, one learns the habits of leadership.

According to Serhan, a leader’s role is to instill in the team a shared vision of where the company wants to go. With a defined vision, the business can establish a set of values, leading to overall quality and success. This is all achievable through team commitment, Serhan said. He listed five components to developing team commitment:

  1. Mission – Establish a company mission that unites the team with a common goal.
  2. Trust – A relationship built on trust is a two-way street between employee and employer.
  3. Honesty – Leave room for open communication in the workplace.
  4. Professional respect – Earn the respect of those you lead by giving respect in return.
  5. Shared risk – Remind team members you are all in it together. Individual performance leads to overall company outcome.

By adopting these leadership traits, one can begin to communicate and relate to employees on a personal level, producing a more cohesive company experience.

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