When the leader said to me, "It's not my job to care about my team! I get paid to make sure the work gets done." I wasn't quite sure how to respond. As a coach it is my job to be curious not conclusive. The value in coaching comes from the client having a safe space to sort through their thoughts and feelings.
And so I got curious. I asked them to complete and repeat, "It's not my job to care about my team because...." Silence. More silence. And then tears. And then this:
"It's not my job to care about my team because they don't care about me."
What came next? More tears (them). More curiosity (me). We ended the coaching session as if often the case - with more questions than answers.
I wish I could say that I offered a silver bullet guaranteed to transform the team overnight. But I couldn't. There is no such thing (and for the love of everything holy if there is such a thing will you please text it to me immediately!?). Instead I offered kindness and support and recommendations for how the team could work better together.
I can't promise you an office full of rainbows and unicorns, but I can promise you this. Leaders who don't care (or pretend to not care) will never get the best from their team. And team members who don't care (or pretend to not care) will never get the best from their leader.
Caring can't be delegated to a select few on an org chart. It's up to all of us.