Management is the only part of business that is truly consistent among all fields. Yet, it is one of the most difficult to get right. Not everyone is cut out to be a boss, but many people that have the determination, strength of character, and passion to lead may be falling into common management pitfalls. Studies have shown that the quality of leadership has a bigger impact on the level of satisfaction employees have than nearly any other aspect of the working world. Learn what makes a good boss, bad boss, and a boss any employee would be happy to follow.
Always Prioritize Listening
Experts agree: the inability to listen to others is the number one sign of a bad boss. Often times, this is a symptom of the mindset that people get when in a position of authority. When you are leading, it is easy to think of your own voice as being the most important. In a business environment, it may be more beneficial to think of the boss as shaping the daily operation, rather than forming it. Do not spend all your time talking, but engage employees in conversation. More importantly, listen to what they say when they speak, and truly take this information into consideration. Even if you decide to go in a different direction, showing that you were open and influenced by what those you manage had to say will significantly improve the opinion they hold of you. After all, they may not want to be leaders, but everyone wants to be heard.
Value That Which Is Different
As humans, we are drawn to people that are similar to us. This is a great way to make friends and stay in our comfort zone, but it is not beneficial for getting work done. It is our differences that allow us to come together and achieve something greater than an individual could. The first area where learning to value different skill sets may come in handy is recruitment. If someone makes you uncomfortable when doing interviews, try to identify the reason. You may be dealing with an individual that looks at situations in a fundamentally different way. Genuinely trying to improve in this way requires serious self-analysis and a deep understanding of who you are, but the benefits are profound. After bringing a diverse group of coworkers together, become the kind of boss that considers the completely unique approaches to problems that others will have. This is what makes the difference between a good boss, bad boss, and aware boss.
Be Honest and Realistic
While compassion and understanding are attributes common to a good boss, bad boss will only be focus on the job. Never forget that the people you are managing are human beings. Even if the same decisions are made, the way the information is communicated will make a huge difference. For example, if you know layoffs are likely to happen, a bad boss may say nothing out of fear that it will lead to worse efficiency. In actuality, not acknowledging the possibility of layoffs will make the entire situation more stressful. Instead, saying something like, ïI cannot guarantee that layoffs will not happen, but there will not be any for at least three months.ï shows that you are about them as people and trust them with the truth. In addition to showing respect, this approach will improve efficiency because no one is waiting for bad news to hit.
Finally, a difference between a good boss, bad boss, and inefficient boss is their openness to critique. One of the healthiest environments a company can operate in is one in which any employee feels safe to debate with their boss about how to do their job better. It can be easy to confuse discussion with arguments, but there is no reason for conflict. This strategy only works if the leader is accepting of the possibility of changing their mind. Never take anything personally and remember that everyone is on the same team. Without fear of personal insult, the door is open to deep discussions of how unique and efficient solutions can be found to everyday problems.
Learn More About What Makes a Good Boss
A strong leader is one of the most important parts of any working team, but the skills necessary to be a caring and effective manager can be difficult to build. Review Mighty Recruiter for more tips on what makes a good boss, bad boss, and efficient boss, as well as other business practice advice.