The results are disastrous when a team leader stops engaging with his or her team.
Some leaders mistakenly think that their job is to stay in their office and avoid interacting with their team, and communicate only by email. That is a recipe for disaster. I remember one leader who I was asked to coach. He rarely interacted with his team, preferring to send emails instead of walking around and talking to people.
His team was disgruntled, and the results weren’t where they needed to be. The reality was that the manager was at risk of being terminated because he didn’t even grasp the need for his team to interact with him.
Email can’t replace face time between a leader and the team.
Leading by walking around is an essential strategy for leaders at all levels. Endless meetings, conference calls, and emails will only distance you from the people generating the results. Make it a point to walk through the department and check in with your team. How are things running? Is there anything that you need to make things better?
Listen to and resolve issues. When a team member does raise a question or concern, document it so that you won’t forget it, and then get back to them with an answer, or ensure that it gets passed along to the best person who can solve the problem. Put people first.
Staying close to your team shows them that you care about them, and helps you figure out how to make improvements to the work process, so that your results will go up.
What do you do to ensure you have an appropriate level of face-time with your team?