Professional development

Strategies from the NAFA CAFM Program help managers sharpen their leadership skills to advance technician performance and shop productivity.

From “When will this change be over so we can get back to work?” to “What can I do to help?” Get workers involved in implementing the change and help them to become part of it.

From “Who is doing this to us?” to “Who can help us?” Focus on the challenges that must be overcome. “Ensure that you enlist help from other departments and colleagues,” he says.


Ethical behavior is a trait common to all good leaders. They exhibit both their values and their ethics in their leadership style and actions, helping to prevent a lack of trust - a problem in many workplaces. If leaders never identified their values in these workplaces, the mistrust is understandable. People don’t know what they can expect.

If an organization’s leadership has a code of conduct and ethical expectations, they are meaningless unless the leaders live up to the published code. Leaders that exhibit ethical behavior powerfully influence the actions of others.

According to the NAFA CAFM Program, there are four basic components of ethical leadership that must be understood and developed:

Purpose - The ethical leader reasons and acts with organizational purposes firmly in mind. This provides focus and consistency.

Knowledge - The ethical leader has the knowledge to judge and act prudently. This knowledge is found throughout the organization and its environment, but must be shared by those who hold it.

Authority - The ethical leader has the power to make decisions and act, but also recognizes that all those involved and affected must have the authority to contribute what they have toward shared purposes.

Trust - The ethical leader inspires - and is the beneficiary of - trust throughout the organization and its environment. Without trust and knowledge, people are afraid to exercise their authority.

These elements are interrelated components, the CAFM Program points out. Attention to any one component alone is incomplete and misleading.
Russo, explaining the NAFA CAFM materials, says being an ethical leader means applying the right amount of authority in each situation, and notes that it is helpful to exercise authority within five modes of intervention into the judgments and actions of other. These levels are:

Inspiration - Setting the example so that other committed members will contribute their fullest capabilities to achieve organizational purposes. (The lowest degree of intervention.)

Facilitation - Supporting other committed members and guiding them where necessary so that they are able to contribute their capabilities as fully as possible.

Persuasion - Appealing to reason to convince other members to contribute toward achieving organizational purposes.

Manipulation - Offering incentives other than the intrinsic value of contributing to the achievement of organizational purposes, where commitment is lacking.

Coercion - Forcing other members to contribute some degree of their capability where they have little or no commitment to do so on their own. (The highest degree of intervention.)


Studies show that some 80 percent of problems experienced in any organization are people-related, so good leadership is a great benefit. With good leadership in a maintenance organization, workers feel they are valued and an integral part of the development of the organization.

This invariably results in a stronger business, which is good for your operation’s bottom line.

The necessary characteristics foundational to good leadership can be cultivated, developed and strengthened, provided you are willing to invest the time. It is well worth the effort, concludes Russo, because effective leaders steer their workforce to achieve all the critical aspects of their company’s goals and objectives, and to the success of individuals within the workforce.

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