Leadership Do’s and Don’ts

leadershipDo’s

  • A good leader will facilitate their staff rather than supervise. There is nothing more disempowering and de-motivating for a member of staff to be micro-managed. You hired them to do a job because they were the best person you could find, so let them use their skills and their brains! They will flourish and be keen to come to work if you empower them.
  • Support your team in their decisions, based on your prior training and supervision. Gently let them start to make decisions on your behalf and support them if they didn’t quite make the same decision you would have but it was still a good one, made with confidence and with support from you.
  • Communicate with your team, keep them informed of your over-arching plans, goals, policies, rules etc. Give plenty of praise and feedback not criticism, and do it rapidly so that they do not get into bad habits. Allow them to feedback too, and listen – they might just have some great new ideas that will help your business move forward.
  • Set ambitious and exciting goals that your team will enjoy and embrace but don’t set them too high and end up causing stress, demoralisation and dissatisfaction. Goals should be realistic and achievable as well as exciting and challenging.
  • Always be enthusiastic, motivated and passionate about what you are doing. Whether you are enthusiastic or miserable that is the mood that will spread. Lead from the front with the attitudes that you expect from your staff. They in turn will trust you and want to work hard for you.

Don’ts

  • If you push your team too hard they may become demoralised. By being enthusiastic, you might also become a bit of a perfectionist and this can lead to loss of motivation in the team because they will feel that nothing they do is ever enough. Do push them to use their talents and abilities but not so far that they become stressed.
  • Your strengths can sometimes become weaknesses when you are under pressure – make sure you keep your stress private and don’t take it out on your team. For instance you might be an enthusiastic leader but under pressure become short-sighted and volatile. A confident leader may refuse to admit they make mistakes or become arrogant. A careful leader may become fearful to take risks or become over-cautious. Instead, be constistant despite the circumstances!
  • Avoid giving your staff too much power, you are still the leader. Have a culture of empowerment but keep your leadership role. Allow them to have a voice in the team but not to step on your toes.
  • Never critisice.  A criticism might be just that and have nothing constructive to offer the team member. Instead give constructive feedback as quickly as possible after the event. This will ensure they know when they have done something right or wrong. Feedback should include a solution or a suggestion on how to do it better in the future.
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