Seven Things to Do as a New Leader
Guest post by Rachel Jackson.
All your hard work has paid off. You’ve finally been recognized as the valuable asset to your organization that you strive to be, and you’ve been rewarded with a promotion to management.
Congratulations! Whether you’re leading three people or 30, here are some tips for cementing your new leadership role so that you can build a better team.
Have an Open-Door Policy
An office allows you to close the door if you need to have a private discussion with one of your team members, as opposed to having those conversations in a sea of cubicles. However, if you’re not engaged in a private conversation, your door should never be closed. You should also arrange your office so that you are accessible to your staff; make sure that your desk faces the door and people can make eye contact when entering.
Get to Know Your Staff
Take the time to learn about your team. Get to know their strengths and their weaknesses, how they work, and a little bit about their personal lives. Understanding what drives and motivates your employees will help you to guide them effectively. Learn the ins and outs of who gets along, who works best independently, and who can help bring the team together.
Show You Care
It doesn’t take much to let your employees know that they are valued members of a team and doing so helps them to feel motivated and to be productive. Something as simple as regular lunches with team members or providing small office perks like healthy snacks and a relaxing space for breaks and down-time can go a long way towards making your team feel like they are cared about.
It’s important to make sure that everyone knows what it is that you’re working towards, and that everyone understands the part they play in making it all work together. Set goals that are reasonable, attainable, and measurable. And most importantly, make sure that you communicate those goals to your team in an effective way.
Rather than fostering a competitive and potentially contentious environment, make sure that everyone is working together towards those common goals that you set. Encourage employees to look out for each other and to help each other out. If someone is struggling with a personal crisis like the death of a loved one, let everyone know that you expect them to pitch in until the crisis passes, and encourage them to support their coworker. Let everyone know that they can expect the same level of support if something were to happen to them.
Stand by Your People
One of the most important things that you can do for people that work for you is to support them when things go wrong, not just when things are going smoothly. If they made a mistake, work on productive ways to improve the situation rather than being accusatory or placing blame.
If there is a conflict with a client or customer, make sure that you fully hear the employee’s side of the story before passing judgment or making a rash decision. Remember that a good employee is usually worth more than a single upset customer.
Lead by Example
If you want your team to perform at their best, you need to perform at yours. You are setting the example for what is expected in the workplace. If you want them to be proactive in solving problems, they need to see you doing the same.
Rachel is a mother of two beautiful boys. She loves to hike and write about travelling, education and business. She is a Senior Content Manager at Bizset.com – an online resource of relevant business information.
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