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Who doesn’t want to be the boss remembered for making a lasting impact? Being their favorite or best boss may not be the entire business goal certainly, but when you implement these steps, you’ll not only be favored, but the leader building a fabulously productive team!
Listen to Them
Task mastering leaders struggle to listen the most, as unless the input made is about the task at hand these leaders appear to go suddenly deaf. Listen actively to what employees say. Hear what they may not say or what makes its way to your ear shot from others. Leaders who listen appear to care more about those they lead.
Get to Know Who They Are
Akin to the old concept of Management by walking around, getting to know them means you may have to converse about more than work. Get up from the desk, set the list aside, and be the leader of conversations that help you understand who you lead and what’s important to them. This will be valuable data for motivating their performance and cultivating loyalty and employee engagement.
Show you Care
You and those you lead spend more time at work than home and work can seem like a family. Much like a parent who is kind, but firm, and shows they care in everything they do, as a leader you can demonstrate many of these same attributes. Give them the guidance they need and have the courage to lead them to reach their potential. When done from a place in which you truly care, that will be clear and showing it will be easy to share.
Make the Time
Being too busy to talk is a common leadership challenge, but one that will back fire. My favorite boss, the one from whom I still learn, but haven’t reported to in more than 15 years, was a man who always made time to talk with me. He would clear his desk, focus his attention and hear me out. Mind you, he rarely answered my question, but led me to find my own solutions. His lesson to me was clear: always make time for those you lead. Those who are going to succeed will recognize the time you always take and think twice before coming to you with some frivolous request.
Set Compelling Goals
With this data in mind, you’ll know what is compelling for the team you lead. You’ll be able to stretch their skills without surpassing their competence or damaging confidence. Set goals that cause them to grow and reach and build in milestones of celebration for every amount of progress they achieve.
These steps will help you make a difference and leave a legacy with those you lead. You may become their favorite boss in the process, but if you’re not quite ready to take these steps, at a minimum ensure you’re not the boss they talk badly about in the break room. In fact, here’s an article entitled “Yes, You’re Boss is Crazy. Here’s How to Deal” to make sure what’s listed here is not how they see you!
I’m Monica Wofford and that’s your Monday Moment. Have a great week, an even better Monday, and of course, stay contagious!
Monica, very insightful article. I especially like the point, “Make the Time”. My greatest mentor (he hated to be called “boss”) had the unique ability to make the person he was talking with (not to) feel like he/she was THE most important person in the world. He gave you his undivided attention and allowed no one and nothing to distract him for his conversation with YOU. Thanks for helping me remember the shining example that both he and your favorite boss set.
Thanks much Tom for the great insight. If you were to recommend a topic for an upcoming Monday Moment what would it be?