Leading today isn’t easy. Changes abound. We work virtually. We work globally. Our hierarchies are flatter. Our environments are more collaborative. On top of that, there are so many different models of leadership out there.
We need the right balance between authority vs. autonomy, consensus vs. direct decision-making, and friendly vs. firm. Whether you’re new to management or a veteran leader, it can be overwhelming for many to think about all the different ways they can lead.
But in reality, there are three core competencies all leaders must have to be spectacular.
Give feedback regularly
Feedback is a necessary component to doing business successfully, particularly when working globally. Studies have shown that employee engagement soars when a culture of feedback exists. It has also been proven that employees are more satisfied at work when they receive regular feedback.
The way to create a culture of feedback is to do it often and frame it as a positive for both the individual and the organization. Give both constructive and positive commentary on a regular basis. Also, when giving feedback, be sure to tell the recipient the purpose of your comments, whether it is to grow, improve their image, or protect them. Also, stick to observable facts rather than feelings or hearsay.
Put on your coaching hat
But be a coach that’s different than what you see on the sidelines. Don’t simply call the shots. Empower your team to better themselves. Ask questions, listen, and help them reframe their answers so they can come up with solutions.
I like the GROW (Goals, Reality, Options, and Will) coaching model because it helps someone refine their goal, define their current situation, discover the different options of what to try, and then commit to a particular action. The coachee owns the answers and therefore is more engaged and committed to the outcome.
This strategy works especially well in flatter hierarchies and collaborative environments. Coaching is used to empower and service team members. It allows them to find answers themselves that might even be better than what you would have directed them to do.
Finally, all fantastic leaders are able to assess the different ways their employees work and thrive. They look at their teams’ personalities, cultural backgrounds, even at gender, to identify what approach will be most effective in engaging, motivating and bringing the best out of an employee.
For example, if an employee is extroverted, then they will likely want to talk through issues while an introverted person will want private time to think and then come to you with a solution.
Studies find that people most often leave their jobs because of their direct supervisor. That is a lot of power. By learning what and how to motivate your team, you will be able to achieve your goals and increase productivity and profitability. Hard work and happy employees are unstoppable.
Having these effective and critical conversations will enable you to have a strong connection and see your team be more productive and successful.
For more on mastering these strategies, check out my free Weaving Influence webinar tomorrow, Dec. 7, at 2pm EST.