KW: In terms of diversity, how does inclusive management directly impact business success? In other words, is diversity really important, or is it just another HR policy?
SC: In many cases, diversity is an HR policy and a buzzword that is a very hot topic. But think about it. Without diversity, there can be no synergy. It's only because there are differences that can be courageously expressed by the different parties that you can create a third-alternative solution to problems. If two agree, one is unnecessary.
It's only because of disagreement, and a culture that allows people to push back on each other and disagree without being disagreeable, that you can create a culture of openness, mutual respect, and the valuing—even the celebration—of differences. In this way, diversity becomes a philosophy and way of life, not a buzzword or slogan.
KW: What exactly is inspirational leadership?
SC: Inspirational leadership means motivation comes from within. It taps people's need for meaning and for purpose, that which gives their lives a sense of reason for being.
That's why the economic model alone is insufficient. Motivating with the "carrot and stick" through money alone is basic but still insufficient. People also need to be recognized for their contributions; that is social. People need to have the feeling they are learning, growing, and developing new skills; that is mental and psychological. But people also need to know the work they do makes a difference in blessing the lives of other people and making a difference for good inside organizations, families, communities, nations, and so forth. Inspirational leadership taps into all four needs in people—to live, to love, to learn, to leave a legacy. It is internal, rather than external.
DK: Because the millennial generation grew up with technology, MTV, and cable news sound bites, many older managers are finding it's hard to keep the younger employees focused. What are your suggestions for motivating the new generation of workers coming into our organization?
SC: My first suggestion is for them to involve both generations—in fact, all generations—in discussing this question. Only by involvement will you get emotional connection with the issue. Otherwise, you're going to try to come up with answers that they don't necessarily buy into.
My second suggestion is that we have two ears and one mouth and we should use them accordingly. We need to learn to listen when we get involved and downplay throwing our weight around with formal authority, so that people feel free and authentic to express what they think and feel without fear of ridicule and embarrassment.
PK: In what ways do you anticipate shifts in the 7/8 habits of highly effective people given that we now are experiencing multiple generations with multiple expectations in the workplace?
SC: I don't anticipate shifts because the 8 habits are all based on principles, not practices. If they were based on practices, every situation, generation of employees, and culture would see things differently. Instead, they are based on universal, timeless, and self-evident principles that never change and that apply everywhere. By involving people in looking at their issues and problems through the lens of these timeless universal principles, they will come up with practices that are in harmony with the principles, even though those practices may vary from one situation to another.