Instruments of production or human beings who must produce? A leader’s beliefs regarding employees drives the leader’s behavior towards employees.
Inherent in the belief that employees are human beings who must produce rather than simple instruments of production is the commitment to respect the dignity of those led. People will do stupid things, make bad decisions, and make mistakes. So will you. Learn from them and help others do so. In the rare situation when someone’s behavior violates ethics, integrity and demonstrates an unacceptable character flaw, get rid of them now. The team expects it. Do it in a way that respects dignity, whether you think they have any or not.
Anyone who has worked with a highly competent and effective leader has grown as a result of the experience. “People are doing the best they can, they will do better when they know how,” is an adage that has been around awhile in the realm of human development. A good addendum to that quote is that it is the leader’s job to help them know how. Consider adopting a personal value that everyone that works under your leadership will grow, improve and be better as a result.
The best leaders build better human beings, not just better employees. I’m the Outsider and that’s what I think.