Traditional leadership practices and the relationship between business owners, executives, and their staff are evolving. Today’s modern workforce prefers a leader that is a coach and mentor rather than a boss or micromanager. These employees want a leader who inspires, encourages, and supports them rather than one who is always telling them what to do.
So which qualities should business owners or executives exhibit to be considered good leaders?
Is it confidence, decisiveness, drive, determination, dependability, grit, positivity, integrity, accountability, strategic vision, innovation, authenticity, humility, and/or empathy?
HubSpot recently conducted a survey on the most important traits and skills of good leaders. As you see below, stellar communication skills came in at number one well ahead of the pack.
It’s clear that business leaders that stick to outdated leadership tactics will be unable to effectively communicate and connect deeply with their team members, thereby negatively impacting company culture, team morale, and the employee experience as well as overall execution. Thus, employee engagement, focus, productivity, and collaboration will suffer. As a result, burnout will increase, and, ultimately, company performance will quickly and drastically decline, too.
Peter Drucker made the distinction that “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.”
As you take responsibility for the livelihoods of more and more employees, transforming from a manager to a leader is crucial to the longevity of your firm.
If you used to be a solopreneur and now find yourself with a growing number of employees, you’re probably wondering how you can step up your game and become a better leader and get more out of your staff consistently. With that, here are nine guiding principles on how to become a more effective leader at work:
- Clearly and frequently communicate the underlying purpose, meaning, and added value of each employee’s role and responsibilities and how it benefits the company, your clients, and the greater economy and society.
- Constantly remind staff why their commitment and contributions matter.
- Demonstrate that you trust your staff and you have confidence in their ability to independently get critical tasks and projects done.
- Support their goals, ambitions, and ongoing personal and professional development.
- Always express appreciation for a job well done and leave no doubt that you have their back.
- Be easily approachable and advise, mentor, and motivate employees as needed. Lead by example.
- Encourage direct reports and all staff to foster new connections and relationships outside of your own team or department.
- Listen well, be transparent and authentic, and promote open dialogue and a collaborative environment.
- Be adept at giving, receiving, and responding to feedback.
Pushing your team hard nonstop only gets you so far. That old-school leadership approach is not sustainable. If you are committed to driving your firm to new heights, you have to set the tone and provide a positive example and clear direction from the top.
Reach out to RevSherpas to learn how we can enhance your executive leadership skills and help establish better communication and cross-team collaboration throughout your organization so that you can better serve your customers and dominate your competition.