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Imagine your worst boss ever. Oh, they were terrible! Mean and degrading; apathetic to your achievements and work, but angry and intimidating when it wasn’t done yet. I shudder to even think about that person and how miserable of an employee I was under them. As organizational psychologist Dr. Nicole Lipkin says, “When people suck, we just kind of suck back.” Under our worst management teams, we failed to learn, grow, and produce in the ways we know we’re capable. Now, think back to the best boss or manager you ever had. Encouraging, supportive, and constantly challenging you to be the best you could be.
Are you challenging your team to be the best they can be?
If you think about it, you know how to be a good boss because you’ve most likely had one, and most likely had a miserable boss that you know not to imitate. Our own experiences will tell us how to do it; we just have to be open to them.
In a presentation given by the keynote speaker at the Women Dealers Breakfast at NADA, Dr. Nicole Lipkin defined ways to use our leadership to grow and retain our teams. These are my takeaways:
Outline Expectations: Define the expectations of the position and what you expect that person to provide within that role. Also clarify what your employee can expect from you as a manager and mentor.
Knowledge Transfer: Take all the knowledge that’s up in your brain that you’ve spent years developing and learning, and pass it on. There’s no point letting all those lessons leave with you while the younger generation is left to reinvent the wheel.
Don’t Forget Rewards and Recognition: Make sure your team knows you see them and recognize their achievements. There’s not a person on this Earth that doesn’t like to be told they’ve done a good job. When it’s appropriate, tell them.
Hold Them Accountable: Ask them how they want to further their own success. You can be a mentor, but you can’t do the work for them, nor should you. Place the accountability in their hands and they will be much more prepared to make the best use of the knowledge, skills, and mentorship that you’re sharing with them.
Keep Challenging Them: Never stop demanding progress and growth. You’re not a babysitter, you’re a boss! Create the best environment for them to grow by continually challenging them to take their own game to the next level.
The right setting for a team can power them to be engaged with their work, loyal to their company, and do great things. In fact, people who are engaged with their work give 25% more discretionary effort. That’s a quarter more effort that they don’t have to give, but do. A good leader can foster and generate these strengths, their teams, and more revenue. Empower your team by being the best leader you know how to be.