People do what people do.

“People do what people see.” I first read that line in a book from my mentor and friend, John Maxwell. There are other ways that particular line can be expressed. “The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.” “Monkey see, Monkey do” or “People do what people do”. Have you ever told someone to be a certain way or do something a certain way and later discover that they were not doing it “that way”? In fact, they were doing it the way you ‘showed’ them how to do it. Why is that? The answer is: Because people don’t do what people say! Instead, they do what they see you doing.

There is a simple model that shows by example the results we want our students/team to also do. Even though they may not ever hear us say it doesn’t mean that they haven’t seen us do it. Here are 4 simple steps to get those that look up to us to replicate the character traits they see you and me displaying:

  • Teach it – You tell them how to do it and the reason why.
  • Model it – You show them how to do it and encourage them to help you. Involvement helps provide ownership.
  • Resource it – Equip them to do it and you help supply them with what they need to do it themselves.
  • Celebrate it – Empower them do it and celebrate their achievement, no matter how big or small it is. 

We have to be at our best daily because we are in the business of bringing out the best in others. Whether we like it or not, we have eyes on us. Hopefully, at the end of the day you will ‘see’ them doing what they saw you ‘do’.

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