3 Things Great Leaders and Dog Trainers Know

I have trained my share of puppies and people to reach their peak performance and the similarities struck me the other day in a conversation with a client: both puppies and people need pretty much the same 3 things.

Photo by Jonathan Kriz on Flickr.

Photo by Jonathan Kriz on Flickr.

Whether you are leading people or training a puppy you want to keep these 3 things in mind:

1. Recognition.

Timely recognition and appreciation for the desired effort and behavior is a powerful way to reinforce the behavior in the future.

Catch puppies and people doing it right and let them know.

2. Connection.

Researchers have found that social connection is a basic human need almost on the same level as food and shelter. Puppies and people want to feel like they are a part of a connected community.

3. Clear directions.

Without clear directions, puppies or people will not know what to do and often will make up something in its place —usually not what you had in mind. Without clarity there is a lot of wasted time and effort.

Puppies and people who don’t get recognition, connection, and clear directions create chaos.

What other things do you need to keep in mind when leading a team?