Whether you’re heading up a small startup or have finally worked your way up to a managerial position in a larger company, developing strong leadership skills will be a key element of your business’s success. A good boss can bring the best out of any employee and lead their team to stronger performances and higher levels of profit. A poor boss, on the other hand, will struggle to retain their staff and will see morale quickly plummet in the workplace.
Follow these simple steps and you’ll be sure skyrocket your business to success in no time.
1. Get to know your staff. If you want to bring a good performance out of an employee, you need to understand their personality first and have a clear sense of their strengths and weaknesses. This will help you tailor your directions to suit their skills, and will allow you to communicate with your employees in the best possible way.
2. Ask for feedback. Allow your employees to offer their opinions and suggestions on a regular basis. You can use formal feedback sessions or prescribed forms that employees fill out and hand in to judge how your staff feel about you and consider what you can do to create a more positive impact.
3. Show your appreciation. A boss who is constantly nit-picking and finding faults is every employee’s worst nightmare. Although constructive criticism is sometimes a necessity, be sure to point out positive things that your staff have contributed and express your appreciation for their hard work as often as possible.
4. Keep it private. Unless you’re handing out office awards for particular achievements, try to offer feedback privately. This will give your employee the opportunity to speak with you on a one-on-one basis and will demonstrate that you’re treating them as an individual. You should avoid handing out criticism publicly- ask to speak with your employee privately if you have a problem you need to discuss.
5. Have clear expectations. In order to deliver what you need from them, employees need to know what you expect. Define each staff member’s role clearly so they know what their position is in the business, and set specific goals for your employees to work towards.
6. Avoid micromanaging. Once you’ve given an employee a task to deal with, try to step back and let them do their work. Encourage your staff to come to you if they have questions or concerns about a project and oversee from a distance.
7. Listen. Not listening to employees is a common mistake made by those in managerial positions. Keep your ears open and be willing to sit down with your staff to hear any concerns that they might have and be willing to assist in any way you can.
8. Admit to your mistakes. Even bosses are human and susceptible to making mistakes from time to time. Instead of passing blame to others and trying to maintain an illusion of infallibility, admit to any mistakes that may have been made on your end and be humble enough to offer an apology when necessary.
9. Delegate. If you’re a perfectionist and a naturally hard worker, you may be tempted to take on too much responsibility and stretch yourself too thin. Your role as a boss is to delegate effectively, so don’t be afraid to hand particular tasks over to employees that you trust.
10. Help employees grow. Don’t keep your staff members performing the same tasks over and over. Once they’ve succeeded on a certain level, move them on to more challenging projects and higher levels of responsibility.
11. Credit where credit’s due. While you certainly play a role in the success of your team, don’t take credit for their achievements. Praise your employees for their accomplishments and let them take the glory.
12. Be decisive. Being the boss means you have to take control and make decisions quickly and with confidence. Take charge when the moment calls and take responsibility for your decision.