DON’T get angry.
Anger does not belong in your business leadership kit bag.
DON’T be cold, distant, rude or unfriendly.
Especially in difficult times, employees take cues from their immediate supervisors and need to hear from them. As such, your team will judge you by your action, moods, and behaviours, not by your intent.
DON’T send mixed messages to your employees so that they never know where you stand.
Keep your message simple, focused and prioritised. Too many messages and initiatives just confuse and alienate people.
DON’T B** S*** your employees.
This includes saying things that you don’t believe in. This includes hiding information and just plain lying. By the time each of us reach our early 20′s, we have all developed very well-tuned B** S** detectors.
DON’T act more concerned about your own welfare than anything else.
Your success will come through the success of your team. “Self-serving detectors” are also very well-tuned in most employees.
DON’T avoid taking responsibility for your actions.
You are the boss. As such, you are accountable and the buck stops with you. You are trying to develop accountability throughout your company. So, lead by example.
DON’T jump to conclusions without checking your facts first.
You scream at an employee who has missed an important meeting that morning. After several minutes, the employee responds: “I apologise and should have contacted you. But, I just got back from the hospital as my mother has been diagnosed with terminal cancer.”
NOW HERE ARE THE DO’S, WHICH ARE EVEN MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE DON’TS…
DO what you say you are going to do when you are going to do it.
There is no better way to communicate the message that you are accountable for your promises and that everyone in your company should be accountable as well.
DO be responsive (return phone calls, emails).
You want your employees to punctually respond back to customer requests, so you should do the same.
DO publicly support your people.
Your disagreements and disappointment with your employees can be communicated later and in private. Nothing appears so hollow as your attempt to blame your employees for failures.
DO admit your mistakes …
…and take the blame for failures.
DO recognise your employees.
You should never underestimate the power of simple recognition for a job well done.
DO ask and listen.
“The manager of the future will know how to ask rather than how to tell.” (Peter Drucker). Some of the most dangerous words for you to ever say include: “But, you just don’t understand…” or “Because I said so…”
DO smile and laugh.
Have some fun But, be genuine; programmed fun and faked laughter is worse than doing nothing. When appropriate, laugh at yourself; it will humanise you.
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