Is ordering people around all that owners, managers or team leads are supposed to do? Not at all. In fact, ordering people around is the last thing that an owner, manager, or team lead should do. As someone in charge of things, you have a responsibility to make life easy for your employees and motivate them to be their best. To do that, you need to avoid saying these 5 things to your employees—especially to the best ones!
Managing people is the toughest part of a leader’s job. As a leader, you may not be as accountable as your employees and get away with most things, but bad behavior on your part will not just affect the morale of your employees, it will also have a negative impact on your company’s growth.
Just like employees, managers or leaders are human too and they can have bad days like anyone else. However, there are certain boundaries that leaders mustn’t cross. As the leader, you are the one in charge. You are responsible for steering the ship and your words carry the most weight so make sure you choose them wisely. Here are 5 things you should never say to your employees—especially to the best ones.
‘I’m in Charge. So, Do What I Tell You To’
If you say these words to your employees, then you’re being demeaning and disrespectful and people won’t work long for a boss who demeans and disrespects employees. Remember, everyone at work is an adult and has a certain degree of self-respect. If you say anything that hurts the self-respect of an employee, then don’t expect that employee to be motivated to work for you.
Even if you are the one paying your employees, you have no right to hurl abuses at them for not doing their job. Remember, you employees are not your slaves and they will be disheartened to work for you if you come down too hard on them. If an employee doesn’t understand the importance of a task, then provide more detail.
Show them how performing the task will benefit them, the team and the organization as a whole. Don’t abuse your authority. Instead, be respectful when dealing with employees by engaging them in conversation, ask questions in a polite manner and welcoming feedback from them.
Don’t Waste My Time. We’ve Already Tried This Before
By sharing their thoughts and ideas on processes they see or use each day, employees add value to the organization. However, often the idea and thoughts on processes shared by employees have been tried or thought of before. In such cases, the worst thing a manager or leader can say is ‘We already know that or we’ve already tried that’ without letting the employee complete what he/she has to say on the matter.
Not only does this demotivate employees, it also shuts down innovation and initiative within the company, which in turn prevents the company from growing. So, if you want your company to grow, encourage open dialogue and allow employees to share their ideas and thoughts on processes and other company matters they’re involved in.
It’s Your Problem. You Deal with It
Maintain an attitude of shared responsibilities with your employees if you want them to be their best. Think of their problems as your own problems and contribute equally to come up with a solution. Never let your employees feel isolated in a crisis.
For employees, nothing is more discomforting than a boss or leader who shuts them out and doesn’t help them when they raise an issue. As a leader/boss, it is your responsibility to be involved in the problems of your employees as this will put across to them that their work is valued and they’re part of a bigger effort.
While you may not have the solution to every problem your employees face, offering support, guidance and advice to employees will help them find the required solution.
The quality of good leaders is that they take responsibility for their actions. You do nothing but set a bad example for employees to follow in the future when your shrug away blame or shirk away responsibility.
You’re Doing Perfect
While validating the effort of your best employees is always good, telling them that they’re doing perfect can backfire. By telling your best employees they’re doing perfect, you stop them from improving.
Remember, your employees will always have room for improvement so if you want your employees to improve, then provide them corrective feedback rather than feedback that is ‘over the top’. Honest but encouraging feedback is what will motivate your best employees to improve further and this will pay you back in form of increased productivity and revenue.
Work till You Drop Dead
You don’t necessarily have to utter these words for them to leave an impact. Your actions are enough to do that. No one is asking you to let everyone with a cold have days off from work but you will be doing more harm than good to your company if you force employees to work with contagious conditions such as Influenza and other viral illnesses.
Not only will the sick employees turn in less than satisfactory work, they will also spread their germs and cause other employees to become sick. Surely, you wouldn’t want more than half of your employees to be sick when you have an important deadline coming up.
If you say these 5 things to your best employees, verbally or non-verbally, you will make it incredibly difficult for your company to grow or even survive. So, avoid these words/things like you would a plague! Employees are your biggest asset. Treat them right so they treat the clients well.
by Bobby J Davidson
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