“Are You Satisfied with Your Care?” A Leadership Lesson from Big Hero 6

Recently it was family movie night at the Kingsley house. We decided to watch Disney’s Big Hero 6, which had just won the Oscar for Best Animated Feature Film.

“Are You Satisfied with Your Care?” A Leadership Lesson from Big Hero 6

Aside from being entertaining—which almost goes without saying for a Disney film—Big Hero 6 has some great leadership messages for children. Science is not just a positive force but a cool pursuit, and education and good thinking ultimately solve major problems. The group of brainy young heroes is racially diverse and includes girls as well as boys.

I was surprised though, to find that Big Hero 6 also has a great message for leaders, one that goes even beyond the themes of personal responsibility, teamwork, and sacrifice that are woven throughout the plot.

It’s a message that comes from the health care robot Baymax, programmed not to let go of an assignment until there’s a positive answer to this simple question:

Are you satisfied with your care?

Imagine how it would change the leadership climate of our teams and organizations, and of business in general, if that became the standard:

  • We wouldn’t rest in service until we knew beyond a doubt that every client and stakeholder who walked out of our doors was happy.
  • Similarly, we would keep working to build strong, effective teams and workgroups whose members, like the people they serve, are satisfied in their experience.
  • The phrase “good enough” would no longer be meaningful.
  • With no traction for complaining or eye-rolling, workplace communication would be focused on growth and innovation.
  • Honest assessment would help us find weak points, not to exploit them but to strengthen them.

Realistically, of course, that’s probably not going to be happening any time soon. But each of us can use that question—Are you satisfied with your care?—as a touchstone, a reminder that leadership is at its core about serving, communicating with, and caring for others.

As you go through a day, imagine asking that question of those you encounter, whether they’re clients, board members, colleagues, employees, or even friends and family members. How would they respond? What steps can you take to make sure the response is a positive one? What things can you ask or say, like the animated robot, to foster the kind of open communication that pinpoints issues so they can be addressed?

Effective service. Empathy. Open communication. And above all, a tenacious commitment to caring. These are all the things we should be focusing on every day to be at our most effective. All in one simple question.

{Image Credit: Disney Big Hero 6 Photo Gallery}

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