Why Commitment Matters So Much to Leaders and Teams

Jul 15, 2014

Have you ever considered how commitment affects your relationships in the workplace? Our thoughts and behaviour towards other people are dependent on how committed we are to them (and vice versa).

Our CEO and corporate consultant, trainer and speaker, Gary Gzik describes this in his Levels of Commitment Model.

Rope for mountain climbing

Take for example if someone comes to you and tells you they are going to be late delivering a project. If you are 100% committed to them, you might be disappointed, but also might start thinking of the many other things they have on their plate, the roadblocks the project has faced and that this delay is an anomaly amongst the great work they’ve previously done. You would probably offer them your help to complete it.

However, if you are only 50% committed to them, you will put the fault on them, start thinking of other poor work they’ve done and feel negative towards them. You might feel this is “expected”, not an anomaly.

When you are committed to someone (politically, intellectually, emotionally, spiritually, etc.) you trust them and are loyal to them. You go out of your way to see the good in them and provide your own time and energy to help them succeed. This goes the same for people who are committed to you. They remain loyal to you and go out of their way to help you.

But when that commitment level drops, people become cynical. They start to look for flaws and faults and stop expending their energy to help each other.

This model is integral to leadership. Leaders must garner a high commitment level from their team members. Members need to be highly committed to their leaders in order to trust their decisions, and give their time and energy to achieve the goals of the team. If they don’t trust their leader, then they will question every request and will hold back.

It is also important for the leader to be highly committed to their team members and trust them to make the right decisions and choices and have faith in them. Also, for each team member to be committed to one another.

It is through strong levels of commitment that teams can go above and beyond to achieve great things.

How committed is your team?