Leadership Series #2: What Your Team Members Need from You

In our previous article, we discussed some ways that you as a business owner can spot those on your team who have leadership potential. Although it may not seem like an easy task, picking someone who you consider to be a worthy candidate for leadership in your business is but a small step toward creating a successful leader within your team.

Before you can even begin to mold a good leader, you must take a step back and do some self-reflection. Are you, yourself, the type of leader that you want to see your team members become? A student is only as good as their teacher, so in order to build successful leaders from your existing team members, you must first successfully lead them.

Here are a few things to keep in mind in order to ensure that you are creating an environment of growth and leadership within your team:

Your team members are people, with feelings and a life outside of work.

Owning a business can be very stressful at times, and it may become easy to lose sight of the importance of person-to-person connection when things are becoming fast-paced and maybe even getting a little out of hand. When times are tough, it is crucial that you remain calm and collected.

  • Keep a confident, relaxed, and determined demeanor.

This will create the space for your team members to follow in your footsteps, thus resulting in stressful problems being resolved much quicker and with a more positive energy.

  • Continuously remain positive

The environment you create for your team members will reflect in their work, communication, and attitude. Your attitude will reflect in that of your team.

  • Remain fair and flexible with things like scheduling.

Be sure to put out the schedule early on in order to give your team members time to plan their personal time accordingly with their work time, and request time off in advance so that you, in turn, do not have to later worry about finding coverage last minute.

  • Be transparent

Communicate things that you feel need to be said. Yes, this means that if you feel that a team member is slacking off or doing something wrong, you must bring it up with them.

  • Keep kindness in your discipline

No human being will be filled with determination to grow and do better after being belittled and put down by their superior. Choose a form of communication where you can unapologetically make them aware of your feelings toward them or their work, and simultaneously allow them to clearly understand how to do better.

  • Be professional, approachable, and fun-loving

Still, keep this within reason and continue to demonstrate confidence and loyalty to your team and the company.

Create a positive, professional workspace through clear communication.

As you can tell by now, clear and positive communication skills are some of the most important qualities in a successful leader. Therefore, you must use these skills in all aspects of your role as a business owner.

  • Set standards and clearly share your values and expectations

Hold your team accountable to your standards, expectations, policies, and procedures. Give them no excuse to stray from what you need from them as a member of your team.

  • Be open and honest

When a decision needs to be made that will affect their daily workflow, your open communication will allow them to feel secure in their position and come up with powerful solutions.

  • Be a source of coaching and mentoring

Make your team members feel valued. This will then be reflected in the their work, especially in their customer service. If they are disgruntled and unhappy or feel unvalued, this will surely show in how they treat a customer.

  • Praise your team

Your voiced approval will greatly benefit the team and their work ethic moving forward. It feels great to be noticed for doing something good, and this is a feeling almost all dedicated team members crave.

Engage in the workplace.

Although you as a business owner hired and pay your team to make things run smoothly in your business, you are not exempt from participating and engaging in the every-day workflow.

  • Offer your help

If there is a spot that needs to be filled or a task that needs some help in being completed, offer yourself as part of the team to make things work. Your humbled service to your teammates will show them that although you are their superior, you are fully engaged in this business that you worked so hard to create.

  • Familiarize yourself with each individual’s strengths.

Once you have a true connection with your team, you can assign each one of them tasks that fit best to their strengths and will allow them to shine.

  • Maintain a zero-tolerance policy for horizontal violence, gossip, and inter-team backstabbing

Negative, harmful interactions between your team members will always lead to a weak and unstable work environment. Do not allow them to treat each other with any form of disrespect.

You are the most powerful leader of your business, and if you want to shape a team of leaders who work well with you, with each other, and within your business dynamic, you must stay in your power the best way you can. If, after reading this article, you have any questions or concerns about how you can better yourself as a leader for your team, contact us! We’re here to help.