When you think of a leader, what comes to mind?
Regardless of what you think being a leader means, it’s important that those in positions of power know how to lead a team. Poor management results in poor performance and fewer successes, which could cost you time, money and resources.
If you want to become a better leader, there are always ways to improve and become a better example to set for your team. As long as you continue to work hard and hone your skills, you’ll see progress within yourself like never before.
Here are four tips to help you become a better leader for your team.
Be a role model.
The popular saying of “Practice what you preach” is more than just words; it’s an honest way to live. Being a leader is no easy task and requires a lot of work on your part. You’re in charge of a team, and it’s your responsibility to create a path that’s easy to follow.
If you want your business to run in a certain way, or you want your team to do things a certain way, the best way is to lead by example. Good leaders practice what they preach well before they expect that same behavior from others. You need to show your team what you want to see, and they will follow suit.
The only way to make positive changes is to recognize that those changes need to happen in the first place. If you’re in denial about your leadership style, you won’t be able to open your mind to new perspectives. This hinders you from becoming a better leader and living up to your full potential.
Research published by Harvard Business Review in 2015 shows that self-reflection improves work performance. When employees spent 15 minutes at the end of their workday reflecting on how it went, their performance improved by 20 percent. Acknowledging their successes and setbacks allowed them to change what wasn’t working and keep what was, which drastically changed their results.
Take time at the end of each day to really dig deep and think about it further. If you ignore what happens in your everyday life, you’ll never be able to change things for the better or create the work environment you want.
Trust your team.
Your employees are part of your team for a reason; otherwise, they wouldn’t be there. It’s normal to experience stress in a demanding environment, which may give you the urge to check on your employees’ progress. While there’s nothing wrong with checking in, there’s a substantial difference between that and micromanaging.
Micromanaging does nothing for your team but belittle their skills and show them you don’t trust them to perform. It creates an untrustworthy, bitter situation where one person feels patronized while the other demands more.
To avoid this, set clear expectations for your team from the beginning. Depending on your expectations, your team will know if they’re prepared to take on the work and can make that decision for themselves. Always communicate clearly and ask that they do the same so there are fewer chances of mistakes.
Everyone likes to feel appreciated for their hard work, especially when it’s from someone they look up to. Imagine putting all your effort toward your job only for it to go unnoticed and unappreciated. It would make anyone feel upset and unworthy.
Research from the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, reported by CNBC, indicates that many employees leave their jobs due to a lack of respect. Your gestures of appreciation don’t have to be big or cost a penny. As long as they’re sincere, they make all the difference in how your team feels about their work environment.
The next time someone exceeds your expectations or picks up the slack, go out of your way to recognize them for it. A few short words of acknowledgment go a long way and can make a world of difference. You can leave a note at their desk, praise them during a meeting or perform another thoughtful gesture they like to show your appreciation.
Over to you.
Being a good leader takes work and dedication, but with enough perseverance, anyone can become a leader others admire. It’s a lot of responsibility to manage others well, but following these tips is sure to help you reach your goal faster.