Behind every great company is a great manager, or a team of great managers. You can probably think back on a manager or superior who you still think fondly of and respect. He or she may have made an important impact on your life, which has led to the career you have today. So what sets the great manager apart from the so-so manager? We are outlining a few key characteristics and action-steps that every excellent manager possesses below.
Empathy is the ability to understand and share in the feelings of another. Empathy in leadership is being aware of how your employees are feeling and understanding the root cause behind an employee’s performance. Empathy has long been overlooked in the workplace as a vital leadership strength, but it’s slowly coming to the forefront as an essential characteristic for managers. Being empathetic allows leaders to help employees who are struggling improve and eventually excel.
Gratitude is key in both personal and professional relationships. Without gratitude, resentments can build and lead to an unhealthy work environment. Always take time to practice gratitude with your employees in a sincere and thoughtful way. It doesn’t always have to be a monetary gift, but even consistent words of affirmation and encouragement can go a long way.
Promote Diversity and Inclusion
A good leader will always include diverse individuals in the office. Not only will he or she make sure the team is well-staffed with a diverse group of individuals, but a great leader will be sure that everyone feels included at work. This can mean recognizing unfamiliar holiday traditions that may be celebrated by employees from different cultures.
Set Clear Expectations
Without clear expectations, you are setting your team up for failure. Outlining clear expectations and regularly meeting to adjust expectations when needed is paramount for a team’s success. When you outline exactly what you’re expecting of your employee, there is no room for confusion or doubt that they are not performing to their best ability. This also keeps everyone on the same page, so the workplace can thrive.
A good leader cannot be bogged down with the day-to-day minutiae of the workplace. A good leader will assemble the best team possible and delegate important tasks to others. A big component of this step is also trusting that the right employees are getting the job done. That means not micromanaging their work, but instead championing them on their efforts and providing critical feedback when needed.
Employees want to trust and respect their superiors. The best way to accomplish that is to always be communicative with your team and show accountability for your actions. If you put a new system in place, follow through to be sure you’re fulfilling your end of the bargain so the team can thrive.
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