The four F’s

What motto guides you?

“Adrian” struggled as a leader in her own business because she was focusing more on her employees feeling valued than paying attention to her own inner voice. When their performance was not up to par, she’d be upset on the inside but then make up for what was needed herself rather than deal with it.

Being conflict-averse was causing continual conflict within her and it was taking a toll on her health and wellbeing. Until she reflected on what she really wanted the workplace to be like. She thought about how she wanted things to work, what she expected from her employees and the kind of work ethic she wanted them to have. Adrian has a strong work ethic – she’s consistent, pays attention to quality, thinks about customer impact, does her best every day. She wants people like that working with her.

As she reflected on what’s important to her, she remembered something a manager she respected told her years ago. To be a good leader, you must be Fair, Firm, Friendly, Factual. Recalling the 4Fs, and how well they worked for that manager and his department, hit Adrian with a jolt of awareness. The 4Fs could work for her. That’s what she needed to do. So she adopted them as her motto.

Now, Adrian manages with the 4Fs in mind. She’s clear in her conversations with employees and potential employees about her expectations regarding quality and consistency of work, communication, and the role everyone plays in teamwork. She’s more confident as a leader. It’s helped her know how to deal with difficult situations that, in the past, she may have ignored and been upset about.

Is it fair? Is it factual? Am I being friendly yet firm in my approach? These questions are on Adrian’s mind every day. How might they serve you?

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