The best leaders in the business world have an unparalleled work ethic, as well as the undeniable determination to overcome any obstacle in their way, while at the same time understanding they need to interact and communicate with their team like humans. You can’t be a good leader without authentic and genuine human connection. Here are three tips to be a better leader this year:
1. Be Straightforward
Have you ever had a boss in the past that was very unpredictable? Meaning, you never knew what his or her reaction would be if you went to them with a question or suggestion? If you’re not straightforward 100 percent of the time, your team members will do everything they can to avoid communicating with you. If this disconnect occurs, you will drastically water down your influence. A strong leader is approachable at all times and straightforward.
One of the simplest solutions is to always leave emotions, personal issues and distractions at the door. When you walk into work, or start your day from a remote location, those “other” things can’t come along. Check them at the door until your day is over.
Life happens, and we all deal with things outside of our professional lives, but it’s how we handle those other things that impact the type of leaders we become. Consistency is key when it comes to communication, your team needs to know they can come to you at any time or discuss any topic — and that trust is built by being straightforward.
2. Listen More
There are very few things more stressful and overwhelming than starting a business. The minute you decide to make the leap and become an entrepreneur, you immediately wear several hats and take on countless responsibilities.
Many entrepreneurs assume the “boss” role and become dictators, letting their title cloud their better judgment. Instead, communicate just like you would in a normal conversation. Speak, but more importantly, listen.
Listen outside of your own conversations as well. When you constantly have your ears open, you will pick up on things that can be improved upon within your company that will not only make your team members happier and more productive, but also have a positive impact on your bottom line.
3. Give Your Team a Voice
It’s important that you make it routine and easy for people to speak up when needed. Make sure you have time allocated for discussion. To get communication and feedback flowing, try appointing a new team member to field questions, comments and concerns at the end of each meeting.
The most successful leaders today have a strong vision, and empower their entire team to have a voice, allowing them to contribute to the vision. By giving your team a voice, you empower them to contribute to the overall well-being and growth of your company.
How do you approach being the best leader you can be?
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