mind your business: What Employees Want in a Leader
Do you ever feel overwhelmed as a manager? Being overburdened by the responsibility of having to figure out what others want and need of you is a familiar feeling shared among leaders. Fortunately, there is a best practice for obtaining just the kind of information needed to increase your leadership effectiveness: Ask people what they want.
The following 10 traits emerged when front-line staff, supervisors and middle managers were asked to describe the things they look for in a boss. Employees want bosses who are:
Good bosses have good ideas, but their role in innovation is more as facilitator than consummate mastermind. They are not threatened by the talent of their employees, and cultivate a working environment that allows each person's creativity to come forward.
Good bosses provide important education and guidance that show employees how their work is contributing to the larger goals of the organization. They help employees build confidence by giving stretch assignments that require demonstration of new skills and right-sized risk, then providing feedback.
Good bosses listen to their employees and show an interest in their opinions by providing opportunities to talk openly. They also encourage personal and professional growth, sometimes by giving access to resources (like professional development experiences).
Good bosses can make hard choices and have the finesse needed to get people behind even unpopular decisions. They are able to secure resources for important initiatives worth pursuing. They use analytical frameworks for guiding change, promoting transparent processes and communication.
Good bosses are visionary managers, able to clearly see and build a commitment toward a compelling future state. They articulate a sense of direction, map out the path and shepherd the process.