We all know a boss who got her or his job by luck. Others earn their way into the driver’s seat. Either way, many people become a boss without getting the proper training to manage.
Even great performers who rise to leadership positions may not have been trained to manage others.
So, aside from taking a course or two on leadership and reading a few books, how can you get better at being the boss? Here are six quick guidelines:
- Adapt to each person you oversee. Look at employees as individuals. Get to know their strengths and weaknesses and deal with them accordingly.
- Don’t be a know-it-all. Acknowledge your own humanness. Turn to employees for advice on how you can be a better supervisor to them.
- Learn to let go. Don’t micromanage. Trust employees to do their jobs. Cultivate their growth by giving them a little more than they think they’re capable of doing.
- Stay available. Keep your door open, and let employees know they can come to you at any time to discuss any issue that affects them positively or negatively.
- Work for employees’ goals. That means first knowing what an employee’s goals are. Then, serve as a mentor, and strive to do what you can to advance a person’s professional goals.
- Lead instead of dictate. Just because you are the boss doesn’t mean people will do what you say. If they don’t respect your authority, they will perform at a minimum level to retain their own security. Leaders must inspire their followers to greatness. Help everyone connect with the objectives so they take ownership. Then they will do their work with pride and care and be grateful for the empowerment.