All Great Bosses Do These 4 Things

John Krautzel
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There's more to being a great boss that making sure your team does adequate work and meets deadlines. A truly great boss also leads his team with integrity, sharing his passion for his work and helping employees grow. Better management techniques lead to workers who understand the importance of their jobs and give those jobs their all because they truly care. Follow these tips to increase engagement and build a workforce ready for the future.

1. Build Connection

The fastest way to build connection with the individuals you manage is to become an active member of your team, working alongside your employees. Get your direct reports used to seeing you around, offering support, encouragement and help when needed. Your active participation shows your employees that you are knowledgeable about the work they do. This leads to more respect for you as their boss and helps keep the manager-employee relationship nonadversarial. Don't be afraid to share your expertise while also seeking input from others, and, perhaps most importantly, work hard. Great bosses show a strong work ethic and never expect their team members to work harder than they do.

2. Develop People

Great bosses are also coaches, cheering their team members on through the tougher times and celebrating their victories. As a coach, you should help your employees develop the skills they need to thrive in their positions. Get in the habit of providing training that transfers skills and knowledge, and then letting each individual use those skills and that information in their own ways to excel. Serve as a mentor by listening to concerns and getting to know each worker's strengths, weaknesses and goals. Then offer appropriate help towards meeting those goals within your organization.

3. Provide Appropriate Recognition

Always be sure to offer recognition for a job well done. Everyone wants to be appreciated, and showing your appreciation to your employees encourages them to work harder each day. Try offering recognition through a variety of paths to meet the needs of different personality types. Offer direct congratulations in person and through email. Tell your boss about employee accomplishments, and encourage higher-ups to offer further recognition. When appropriate, make note of individual successes during meetings and in company publications. Also, always remember that great bosses never take credit for other people's ideas or work.

4. Prioritize Communication

Avoid being the stereotypical boss, shut in your office and not to be disturbed unless it is an emergency. Better management requires regular, transparent communication with your team and your individual employees. Get in the habit of talking to your team every day. Set up individual meetings with workers on a regular basis to provide feedback and listen to concerns. This helps both you and your team members avoid surprises. It also builds loyalty when your workers know that you don't keep things from them.

Becoming a great boss takes time. Start improving by putting your focus on people and relationships while still working to meet company goals. As you focus on your employees, it becomes easier to communicate better, take on a coaching role and build those connections that move you past typical and into great boss territory.


Photo courtesy of nenetus at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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  • Nancy Anderson
    Nancy Anderson

    @Trudi D - thanks for the great comment. Takes a big person to admit this! It's tough as a manager because you have so many things that you have to worry about and pay attention to. But I agree - the staff must come first. And, when you just acknowledge their work - even a simple great job - they will work twice as hard to please you and get the project done right. Who knows - your "do over" might be just around the corner! All the best.

  • TRUDI D.
    TRUDI D.

    This is excellent advice. I was one of those managers that was out of touch with the staff. I was the senior project manager and always felt my day had to be spent on the bigger issues. In reality, it was not I who made a multi million dollar project a success, it was my staff. Their hard work and dedication is the reason I met the project deliverables. Looking back, my one regret is that I didn't get down in the trenches with them. I didn't give them the recognition they deserved for those long hours and weekends they came in. If I had to do it over agajn, I would follow the advice given by Mr. Krautzel in this well done article.

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