Take a moment to think back on your career in its entirety for a minute. You’ve probably had some good bosses and some not so good bosses along the way. When you think back to your employers who had a positive impact on you, what comes to mind when you think about their management style? Did they lead by example? Did they believe in you? Were they able to help you to become a better version of yourself?
Now think about your experiences with an employer that you didn’t particularly enjoy working with. Did they micromanage you? Was their management style controlling? Were they focused on unnecessary work processes?
I’m sure that you’ll be able to see from the above that there is a big difference between a boss and a leader.
Modern leaders must now be willing to bury conventional management habits and become coaches that provide vision and inspiration for their team instead of holding onto old management habits.
If you’re reading this and you’re in a management position yourself, then here are five things that will aid you in becoming a better leader:
Share your vision:
According to new research, 61% of employees don’t know anything about their company’s vision for the future. While most managers tend to divulge very little information about this to their staff, leaders will set a very clear strategy and vision for their team. They believe that getting employees involved will inspire them, especially when they’re reminded how their work contributes towards the overall vision and success of the company.
Be a mentor:
Understanding your employees, believing in their worth and helping them grow is incredibly important if you want to foster a loyal team. 80% of employees are more invested in their jobs and are willing to work longer hours for an employer who motivates them and who helps them achieve their goals.
Give your staff a reason to come to work in the mornings by creating an environment which is uplifting and motivating.
Be a team player:
Just because you’re a manager or an employer doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t still be prepared to roll up your sleeves and get stuck into the job at hand. A true leader will do whatever it takes to inspire his team to get the job done. Working together with your team and being willing to do some of the so-called dirty work or grunt work will earn you heaps of respect.
Give regular feedback:
Great leaders give praise where praise is due. Staff who feel undervalued or unappreciated are much more likely to look for employment elsewhere, but if you commend them on a job well done every once in a while, that praise will go a long way. Employees who feel valued will continue to perform well and will keep going above and beyond in the workplace.
If however, you find your employee’s performance slipping, then pull them aside and have an open and honest conversation with them. Make sure that as an employer, you have empathy for your employees and let them know that they can be open with you should they be struggling with anything that could potentially affect their performance.
Asking them questions such as “What can I do to better support you?” will help them to feel supported, heard and better understood. Every person learns in a different way. It’s important to know what each of your employee’s method of learning is so that you can give them what they need.
Let your staff members set their own targets:
Never set targets for people yourself. Objectives and goals should sit with your employees. When you take people on in sales, they’re invariably going to be working on commission. A leader will concern themselves with understanding what their staff want to achieve. What motivates them? If you know what motivates your team, then you can help them achieve what they want, and your company will benefit as a result too.