So, you want to be a great boss?
Being a good boss is important any time, but especially during times of uncertainty. Even if you feel wobbly about your own business sustainability, your employees will still continue to look to you for strength. So, what can you do to support your employees – to be the boss they love, respect, and will stay with?
Ten leadership strategies that can make a difference in your business
Accept that leadership is made, not born, and be determined to learn and grow
Work with a business coach to build your leadership skills. Watch some of the free leadership content now available on YouTube. Listen to podcasts while traveling.
Take ownership for setting clear expectations, provide regular feedback
Give feedback that highlights your employee’s successes and also identifies areas for growth and development in a kind and thoughtful way.
Find each person’s unique talents so they are doing work that is aligned with those strengths
Then, step back and don’t micromanage. If problems occur, sit down with the employee(s) and help them find the solution that they need to implement.
Employees would far rather know where they stand than have to guess. If there is bad news to share, accept the situation and be upfront with your team or an individual employee.
Treat everyone as an adult – even if there are childlike behaviors on display!
Always appeal to the highest good in a person and invite them to be part of a solution. Be clear about the natural consequences if the right adjustments aren’t made.
Accept that you don’t always know the answer
Engage your employees to help find solutions to problems or find creative ideas for new business development. While some employees just want to turn up and do a job, it is a rare individual who doesn’t feel buoyed and appreciated by being asked for their opinion and input.
Be prepared to do whatever it takes
If that means mopping the floor or fixing a leaking toilet — go for it. In so doing, you demonstrate that you and your employees are all in this together.
Remain calm in a crisis and don’t allow or perpetuate drama
Yes, some people seem to thrive on drama, but that’s for TV — in the workplace, be clear that drama doesn’t belong, and that gossip is not acceptable.
Set goals for the business which then trickle down into goals for each employee
We all do better when we know where we are supposed to be going. This is particularly important for new employees who have a lot to learn in a short period of time. Resist the urge to throw them in and see how they swim. Instead, provide a training structure and then check in regularly as they get up to speed. Align their work progress with the company goals.
Laugh — never be afraid to laugh in the workplace.
It takes 26 muscles to smile and 62 muscles to frown. Laugh lines are much happier than frown lines. Employees who see laugh lines are more likely to be positive and productive. Employees who see frown lines are more likely to be wary of making mistakes and less likely to bring their best selves.
Keeping good employees and reducing turnover is important
Not just for your reputation, but for your bottom line too. How many of these leadership strategies do you use every day? If there are gaps – start practicing new leadership skills and earn that Best Boss mug!
Kate Wells, MBA. Azurite LLC – Fractional Chief Human Resources Officer
Kate is a veteran small business owner and HR expert. She acts as Chief HR Officer for small and startup businesses who need HR expertise without the employee overhead. Her greatest joy is in setting employees, and therefore the business, up for success. Knowledgeable in the ways of business and people she is a consultant who gets stuff done. Kate has two adult daughters, a lifetime sweetheart, and enjoys hiking, road biking, kayaking, reading, Improv, jigsaw puzzles, and building things with power tools.
Contact Info: 503-329-4829
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