Effective leadership is imperative to the success of any business and there are a number of things a business owner, manager or supervisor can do to effectively lead employees or coworkers.
Listen and Communicate
No one can be an effective leader if they are unwilling to communicate with employees and fellow staff. Feedback is one of the most important tools in a leader’s kit with regard to improving employee performance. Staff cannot improve their work if they are unaware of the areas that may be lacking. Additionally, listening to employees is imperative. Conversations with staff can lead to improvements in many areas including morale, productivity and precision. Employers unable to listen to their employees may miss valuable opportunities to address problems that could be costing a business money.
Be Willing to Be Wrong
No one is infallible. Period. Everyone makes mistakes, including the boss. Employees will know when a business owner or manager has done something that failed. Refusing to acknowledge this failure will only serve to diminish employees’ opinions of their supervisor. Often times, those in charge who are unwilling to accept blame for their mistakes will attempt to shift blame to other employees. This creates an uncomfortable work environment and will only damage general morale
Don’t Get Ahead of Yourself
People in leadership positions are often called upon to train others in new areas, such as software or other relevant products. It is tempting to assume that you’ve grasped the material quickly and move right into training other employees. This, however, is not an effective strategy. When faced with a room full of employees, one may find they have more questions than anticipated. Any gaps in a manager’s understanding will rapidly come to light. While not having all the answers is not always a bad thing, training employees implies a strong degree of proficiency. If that proficiency is not there, employees may lose confidence in their managers.
There are many qualities that make an effective leader. Visit Part II for some additional pointers for good management.