It is not always easy to feel as if you’re leading your team in a way that encourages each person to tap into their natural talents and resources to assist your company in moving forward. Are you at odds when it comes to feeling that you’re striking the right balance between being a boss or manager that commands respect while also allowing those you lead to feel that you’re open-minded to new ideas and accessible to approach? We’ve all heard the stories of how people have quit jobs simply because of a ‘bad boss,’ or of negative managing techniques.
Here are some real ways to determine if your managing strategies are on the right track:
You’re open-minded to new ideas. Good managers don’t cling to the idea of ‘that’s the way we’ve always done it.’ With our fast-moving technological advances, what worked last year may no longer apply. Good managers allow employees to be innovative and creative.
No favorites please. While this can be challenging, especially when you have an employee that clearly stands above the crowd, it’s important not to show favoritism to employees. If you fail at this all-important rule, playing favorites will quickly torpedo office morale amongst all of your employees and you’ll soon find yourself immersed in dramatically trying to ‘smooth over’ drama that could easily have been prevented—had this concept been a part of your managing skills.
Make everyone responsible and accountable. No one likes to feel as if there are too many players not carrying their weight. Ensure that everyone is held responsible for completing their duties, and accountable for their actions—or more importantly, for their inaction. This improves the individual integrity of the workplace and keeps employees from feeling that they are the sole ones holding the weight of the organization on their shoulders. In addition, employees come to know that they have colleagues that they can depend on and a spirit of teamwork is genuinely fostered.
Learn to address conflict early on. Too often, people tend to avoid conflict whether than prevent it in the first place. Managers are no different and tend to try the method of ‘just letting conflict work itself out.’ In today’s society, this too often leads to circumstances that can become uncomfortable or even volatile at a moment’s notice. Learning some conflict resolution skills or having protocols in place where employees can address issues, whether anonymously or publicly in a safe, secure atmosphere, goes a long way to head off misunderstandings and miscommunication. You may be pleasantly surprised that someone’s perception about a particular comment or situation was simply in error. Tending to these issues and concerns initially, before they get out of hand and come back to bite you, is a good rule of thumb.
There are many great ways to begin to implement the style of managerial leadership you’d like to convey. Begin to take inventory and experiment with what may work for you and your organization.