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  • Gina Folk

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

5 actions that speak volumes in the workplace


Have you ever worked for someone whose philosophy is “Do as say, not as I do?” How did they make you feel?

It’s likely that these leaders made you feel frustrated and unmotivated to achieve. I know this, I am ashamed to say, because at the beginning of my career I was one of these leaders.

I thought that if everyone on my team just did as I said, the results would be perfect. As a young leader, I did not realize that it was my actions—not my words—that made the difference in my team’s performance results.

Words can be misunderstood or misinterpreted, or simply fall on deaf ears. Actions, on the other hand, demonstrate behaviors, qualities, and values that can be watched and learned. Through the years, in working with various types of people, I learned that my team’s results were more successful when I was walking the talk instead of talking the walk.

I write about walking the talk in my book, People Leadership: 30 Strategies to Ensure Your Team’s Success; here, I’d like to share the top 5 actions I describe in People Leadership that I believe speak louder than words when it comes to leading people at work and in your life:

1. Embrace a positive mindset.


When you set your mind on a positive course, you receive positive results in everything you do. Embracing a positive mindset requires you to see the good in every situation, even if it has the appearance of being bad. Approach work with a zest for the best and your energy will be contagious.


2. Accept responsibility for failures.


With a positive mindset, it is not hard to take the “blame” for perceived failures. Let’s face it: things do go wrong in our lives, we make poor decisions, and plans go awry—but as leaders, we must accept our part in the blunder. Choose to see mistakes as lessons, not disasters, and focus on a new and improved way of doing things.


3. Be consistent.


Don’t be wishy-washy. Demonstrate consistent decision making, behaviors, and actions.


4. Be flexible.


In general, people don’t like to change. Demonstrate a willingness to change and improve business practices, as well as your personal skill set.


5. Have fun.


Business can get way too serious. Add your own spin of fun to your work, and don’t take yourself too seriously. This will not only reduce your stress and improve your productivity, it will show your team that they can receive the same benefits if they have fun with their work too.

Your team members are watching your every move more than they are listening to your every word. Don’t be a dictator, be an actor.


Show your people the behavior and results you want to achieve through your own actions, and you and your team will be far more productive.

Reflection Question: What other actions do you feel speak louder than words with your team or peers?


Share your answer in the comments section below.

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