A highly competitive, educated, and abundant global workforce has made it easier than ever for employers to find the best talent possible for their unique needs. This has ultimately lead to prospective employees improving their skills and potential in the hopes of being first in place for the jobs of tomorrow.
Yet all too often, businesses forget about the other side of the equation: that bosses and leadership must also be optimized to deliver for their employees. After all, what has made it easier than ever for employers to find exactly who they need has also made it easier for employees to find new job opportunities.
Bosses have a duty to their employees and businesses alike to be effective, productive, and attentive. Here are 4 ways that any boss can make that into a reality.
Communicate Without Micromanaging
One of the biggest complaints employees tend to have about their bosses is that their communication is inconsistent or poor. Whether it is due to a lack of style or substance, some bosses fail to clearly drive home key points about what they expect from their employees. This obviously can create points of conflict and tension between bosses and team members.
Being absolutely clear about the desired goals, project details, and/or specified tasks is crucial for proper communication. However, too many bosses conflate improved communication skills with a need to micromanage employees. Helicopter bosses are a real thing – and they drive their employees nuts. Learn how to take a step back and trust your employees.
Ensure Workplace Safety
Workplace safety is an often overlooked component of good leadership in the workplace. Many forget that ensuring safety for employees can manifest in many forms. Whether it be ensuring proper protective gear for front-line workers is available and in use or fostering an environment where employees who feel harassed can come forward with complaints, great bosses know how to guarantee the safety of their workers.
There are many benefits for bosses who ensure workplace safety is prioritized. Among these benefits are improved morale among workers and great trust among workers for the boss. Not only does implementing sensible workplace safety procedures improve productivity, but it bolsters the standing of bosses in the eyes of workers!
Understand the Power of Motivation
Being able to communicate with employees is a hallmark trait of a great boss, but it’s only half the fight. Subsequently convincing them to care about their work and be motivated to do better is where the best bosses truly shine.
Powerful bosses understand that prestigious goals and initiatives should be pursued and that when expectations aren’t met, careful consideration (rather than blame) should occur. By collaborating with employees and highlighting what went well alongside what went wrong, bosses can cultivate an environment that encourages workers to try harder and do better.
Remember the Plight of the Employee
Bosses who truly become great never forget how bridging the gap between worker and leader matters. While knowing what it takes to successfully manage a business or enterprise is crucial to long-term success, it is also vital that bosses remember how employees feel and what they expect from the businesses they serve.
Employees expect raises and benefits, dignity, reasonable accommodations, and a meaningful amount of independence to do their jobs effectively (click here to see what non-financial criteria employees need from bosses). Great bosses understand the plight of employees – and more importantly, ensure their concerns are met. A boss who is not able to tap into the needs and desires of employees is not a great boss.
Fundamentally, being a great boss isn’t about being friends with workers or trying to implement the latest corporate lingo. It revolves instead around some fairly basic concepts: give workers room to breathe, communicate clearly, address their material and immaterial needs, motivate them and ensure they’re safe while at work. Addressing these concepts is the hallmark of being a great boss.