Whether you’re taking your first foray into leadership or you simply want to enhance your style and tap into a new process, here are 6 techniques that can boost your ability to lead and improve the performance of your team.
1. Motivate, Don’t Dominate
It often happens that new leaders have trouble exerting power and influence without being overbearing. An attitude of domination certainly won’t help encourage your team or help you earn trust. Instead of focusing on being controlling, focus on ways to motivate the team to do its best. You can do this by incentivizing the work each individual does; recognizing a job well done and making each person feel like she has the power to accomplish everything you expect is far more effective than instilling fear or worry in your employees.
2. Learn How to Listen
You’re more than just an authoritative figure to your team, you’re also a confidante. By listening to your employees, you can not only build up their trust, but you can also identify legitimate problems they are having and help them find solutions.
3. Learn How to Hold People Accountable
You have certain expectations for your team, as any good leader should. And if a team member doesn’t live up to your reasonable expectations, there should be a set of consequences in place. You can always start with a simple verbal warning, and then move onto a written warning and so on depending on the regulations your company has in place.
4. Be Human
Too many new leaders think they must be robotic and free of personality in order to get respect. But your team will respect you more if you act like you. Always be professional, but don’t be afraid to let your real self show. It’ll make you more relatable and trustworthy.
5. Look at Failure and Mistakes as Learning Opportunities
No one looks forward to making a mistake or failing to meet an objective, but everyone can learn from mistakes. Second chances can encourage better work the next time around. Further, when your team sees you applying lessons learned from errors, they will feel more comfortable and confident working under you and learning from you.
6. Show Your Employees That They Matter
There is nothing worse for motivation than working with a dismissive leader that makes people feel unimportant. Every employee brings a necessary talent, skill or contribution to the table –never forget that.
There’s so much to learn about being an effective, inspiring leader. If you’re working toward your business degree online, networking with your diverse set of peers can help you gain a new perspective on leadership; if you’re already in the office, experience is the best teacher.
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