Thursday, December 12, 2013

Why We Should Write the Spouse

When I was the program director at Oakbrook Church, the run for our department was pretty crazy from Thanksgiving through the Christmas services.(It still is.) At that time the two guys who put in the most hours and shouldered a lot of the heavy lifting (yes, sometimes physically) were Monty and Jeremy.

I always took a few minutes in the week or so ramping into our Christmas services to write a letter to each of their spouses. This is the bare bones gist of the letter:

I appreciate how hard your husband is working (all the time. but esp. now)
He's making a huge impact for our mission in the world.
I know this is taking away from family time at home.
Thank you for supporting him--that means so much to him, to me & to God.

Great leadership isn't just considering what your team does on the job; it's leading them holistically, taking into account that sometimes what we're asking them to do here, affects life at home. A letter to a spouse:

  • is a great way to catch people doing things right
  • encourages spouses to continue their support
  • helps the spouse see you and the department/organization as healthy and credible
  • makes the employee feel valued

Who needs you to take 5 minutes today and write a simple yet profound note to their spouse?