I love my kids.
I believe that’s one of my chief jobs as a Dad—to enjoy my children. Sure, Sarah and I can teach them to use the potty, say “please” and “thank you”, tie their shoes, eat their veggies, play nice with others, work hard, and, overall, become productive members of society. But if they never learn that they are enjoyable—not just useful—they’ll never know true joy themselves, regardless of how “successful” they become.
We often place such a disproportionately high value on the utility of a person that we forget to enjoy them. The truth is, positive reinforcement just encourages someone to repeat a desired behavior. On the other hand, delighting in someone for who they are (not just what they do) unleashes confidence, creativity and poise. It frees them to be themselves and offer the best they have.
If that’s the case, then one of my chief jobs as a leader must be to let others know how much I enjoy them.
How have you seen enjoyment unlock a person’s potential?