In any professional environment, management is composed of a leader and a group of colleagues working collaboratively. Together, they work towards their team’s goals. Ideally, the team should meet their targets and perform well under an effective management.
But what if things don’t pan out as expected? Outputs are consistently below targets and accomplishments are little to none. Even enthusiasm at work wanes because of the situation. In short, your team is performing poorly.
One of the most overlooked yet important questions to ask in such scenarios is, where do you seek those solutions? You may often look for answers on outside factors. You think your subordinates do not perform because work benefits are insufficient; salary and compensation are not enough; and opportunities for professional growth are lacking. While these factors may be true in some circumstances, you should also realize that the problem may be internal.
Have you checked on yourself for mistakes? Maybe you should. After all, a leader, according to John Quincy Adams, inspires others to “dream more, learn more, do more, and become more.”
If you fail to bring out the better (if not the best) in your subordinates, you’ve got to admit you’re ineffective at managing and guiding them.
Here are ten signs to look out for when your leadership strategy becomes ineffective:
Your team consistently falls short of expectations
Targets are set to ensure that you and your team will have something to work on in contribution to the overall goal of your company or business. Results, on the other hand, indicate whether you and your team are performing well and effectively to meet those targets. Now, if you and your team often cannot deliver results, there is a problem.
Poor performance and lack of results may indicate that your leadership does not drive them toward accomplishing goals. Have you given them clear directions? It helps to set the direction for your team so they know what should be done. Otherwise, they might be confused as to what to achieve in the end.
There is no adequate direction given
In relation to what is previously mentioned, direction setting must be clear and sufficient.
Your team must understand what is expected of them at the end of a project, and what outputs are needed to be delivered. As the head honcho, you should also be able to illustrate to them the whole picture, so everyone knows how their roles can contribute to the goal.
Good communication is lacking
Every leader should understand their role as the head communicator in their team. Good and effective communication greatly helps any leadership strategy.
More than the ability to influence others, it is your ability to communicate with your colleagues that can move everyone to the right work direction. You should be able to express your expectations, your visions, plans of action, and strategies to your team in a way that they would fully understand, and would get them going.
At the same time, your leadership also entails that you know how to listen to your workers. After all, communication has always been a two-way process. Should they have any concerns about their tasks or the project itself, be ready to lend your ears, and keep an open mind as you hear them out.
There is no flow and exchange of new ideas
A good exchange of ideas signals that your team understands your vision and their contributory roles in achieving that. A lack of exchange, on the other hand, may mean you failed to form the right mindset and work frame for your team.
Reassess if you have communicated well the objectives and targets that need to be met. Confusion in the minds of your team may stump them from the thinking process needed for their assignments and tasks.
Work enthusiasm is going down the drain
Aside from poor work results, waning enthusiasm among your team members should alarm you. The energy at your working environment reflects the motivation your team has with their work. If you’re beginning to notice tardiness or frequent absences among them, maybe it’s time to check if they need better supervision, and touch base with them on their work progress.
Your team routinely suffers from burnout
Another thing you should guard against is excessively working people to their limit. While pushing them to achieve your targets can help in increasing productivity at present, you should consider how it can impact them in the long run. Balance it out by also giving them sufficient time to recharge.
You are indecisive
Good leaders show strong decision making skills. They take calls and commit to decisions to ensure that the project will move forward. If you’re inconsistent at making decisions, don’t expect your team to deliver good work performance. We understand decision making isn’t easy, but it is vital to accomplishing goals.
Changes scare you
As a leader, you should know that changes are inevitable. The best that you can do is take changes as opportunities for improvement and growth of your team. Take it in stride, and show your colleagues how you can turn changes at work to your advantage.
You lack follow-through
Good and effective leaders are set apart from weak ones by their ability to follow through on commitments. You establish your credibility as leader by keeping promises true and delivering results through actions. If you fail to do so, you leave your team with more problems to deal with than contributing to your overall target.
You avoid confrontations
While difficult situations can be intimidating, effective leaders do not shy away from them. In fact, they face issues head on, and take appropriate action to address them. They know that unresolved concerns, no matter how small, can snowball into bigger problems in the future. It is best to resolve difficulties as you go along rather than later, which results in eventually passing the burden to your team.