Just about half of workers have quit a position because of management. There are a lot of traits that could constitute a “bad boss”, but these problems are usually subjective and can be mitigated with proper communication.
There are things that employees wish their bosses knew about them, but are too embarrassed or intimidated to bring it up. So, instead, they resentfully hold it in or... they quit.
It’s important for management to create a line of communication where employees feel comfortable speaking about their concerns or the personal information that is preventing them from fully engaging in their work.
1. They have a life outside of work
People are not machines. People are people. It is impossible for employees to work at the same level of productivity each day. They experience sickness, divorce, family conflict, major life transitions and mental health issues.
If you notice an employee's performance regressing or they appear apathetic, don’t assume laziness. Ask them what’s going on their life and what they need for work to be a better experience. In doing so, you develop trust, loyalty, open communication and, hopefully, resolve.
Most of the time, employees want to do a good job. In fact, many of them sacrifice their wellbeing to do their job well and to please management. It is important for them to know that you’re on their side and willing to hear them when they’re in need.
Consider the whole person when assessing work performance.
Boss Tip: Notice your employees, encourage self-care and offer flexibility
Employee Tip: Talk to your boss when you are overworked and see what they can do
2. They have a unique working style
Bosses need to provide management that is as distinct as their employees.
Some people are introverts and some are extroverts. Some people want consistent, actionable goals and some want autonomous, creative jurisdiction.
These characteristics don’t make one person more effective than another. It’s easy to give attention to the squeaky wheel and overlook a quiet employee. But, does that mean their needs are less important?
Working style influences the boss-employee relationship and should be both considered and respected. Two people can respond to the same prompt in vastly different ways. Think about what motivates each employee and direct from an individualized, strengths-based perspective.
Employees feel and perform their best when their strengths are being highlighted. Find what they are and utilize them!
Boss Tip: Have regular facetime with your employees and ask how they work best
Employee Tip: Request one on one time with your boss to discuss your needs
3. They want you to celebrate their efforts
Rewards exist outside of finances. Employees want to hear that they have done well. They are more willing to engage in their work when they feel their efforts are being acknowledged. Employees will invest into the company what has been invested into them.
Take time to recognize your employees both publicly and privately. Let upper-management know when one of your employees outperforms goals and celebrate them.
So many meetings exist to target weaknesses and there are often missed opportunities to highlight what’s going well and what the company could use more of.
Boss Tip: Regularly acknowledge employee accomplishments
Employee Tip: Let your boss know what projects you’re on, your ideas and progress