How can you – confident leader or not – reasonably be expected to keep a whole team consistently engaged? A whole team. Of individuals.
In your hands lies a mixed bag of skills, backgrounds, interests and everything in between. Some have been with the company longer than you have and some started last week; it’s your job to get them doing their best. Happily.
Inevitably, it’s not always going to be an easy task. You may already know a couple of them and have common interests with a few others. There may be one you find more difficult than the rest put together, or one that intimidates you.
It can take time and effort, but the more you put in to creating a respectful and engaging environment, the higher the reward.
What NOT To Do
- Bury your head.
Do not be afraid to ask for support. It’s there, so use it. If you get a bit lost, other colleagues can help signpost.
- Fake it.
Honesty is the best policy – it’s okay not to have all of the answers. Asking your employees questions instills a sense of collaboration and trust.
Refrain from distracting from difficult relationships with false office niceties. It’s transparent, and doesn’t work! Be honest, address the issues, and work towards a great relationship network among the team.
All of the above REEK of inconsistency and show a lack of confidence, which automatically warrants confusion and mistrust in disengaged employees.
Being an honest, personable leader is hard work, but it’s addressing these underlying matters which will lead to committed employees who WANT to excel. It’s completely possible to feel in control and respected at the same time as letting your guard down. If you lead from within your team with honesty, asking questions and engaging your employees on a more personal level, you will receive as much in return.
Steps to Success
- Look in the mirror.
By far the most important person for you to manage is yourself. Before you can begin to manage others effectively, you need to ensure that you have control of yourself.
- Ask yourself ‘Am I sitting comfortably?’.
If you are, then you’re being a lazy leader. Effective leadership involves stepping out of your comfort zone and facing uncertainty head on.
- Get a hearing test.
Successful leaders really know how to listen. Body language and the underlying reasons behind a conversation are just as important as the words being spoken. Know when to stop talking and listen to those around you.
Good leadership relies on attitudinal qualities, rather than simply management processes. Demonstrate the characteristics that will engage your employees to strive!
Read up on employee engagement, leadership style, trust, the chemistry of conversation and effective leadership. Watch brilliant talks on how to listen better, body language, communicating across skill sets and why good leaders make you feel safe