In the Front Line Leadership training program we ask participants to think back over all the managers and supervisors they have worked for and tell us what percentage of all those leaders were effective leaders. The consensus is that for most people, half of their leaders have been effective and half were ineffective. So it’s a coin toss when you get a new boss — heads, good manager or tails, not so good.
Here are three tips on how to avoid being seen as an ineffective leader in the eyes of your team:
# 1 Avoid Micromanaging
It would be difficult to find someone who enjoys being micromanaged. It is estimated that one third of employees are micromanaged.
Your team will respond better if you clearly describe your expectations and then trust them to get the job done. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t check in or follow up. By all means you should watch how things are proceeding, but avoid supervising them so closely that they feel micromanaged.
As the leader, if you feel that the work is not being completed to your expectations, provide coaching and feedback to help the team member improve in the future.
#2 Be More Approachable and Available
Leaders are often rated poorly by their employees for the reason that the manager or supervisor isn’t around to answer their questions or help solve their problems. Being able to access your leader when you need them is important, especially when you are running into challenges. Many leaders have such busy schedules, they don’t spend enough time being available to their team.
Build time in your day to proactively check in with your team to ask how their assignments are going and to see if they need anything from you as the leader.
#3 Keep your Team Informed
You, as the leader, should be the main conduit of information to your team. When the leader doesn’t keep the team in the loop, the employees will turn to gossip as their primary source of information.
As the leader, find out what is going on in the organization and share that information with your team. Avoid the tendency to limit information, sharing only what you think your team needs to hear — employees are interested in what is happening in other parts of the company.
Following these basic tips can help you avoid being labelled as an ineffective leader in the eyes of your employees. Then you can focus your efforts on being even more effective in the future and reaching your full potential as a leader.