The need to effectively manage others is a very important skill, as a business owner, yet there’s a huge difference between being a manager and a leader.
A manager is there to manage a team of people, and processes, to ensure a particular outcome is reached – whereas, a leader is there to inspire, direct and empower.
In some ways a manager could be likened to an identity governance and administration system in the sense that it has a particular job to do and does that job very well – but it does not inspire and empower; it merely keeps the right people on track doing the right tasks.
In that vein, let’s take a look at some principles to empower you to become a better leader within your business and create a more efficient and vibrant workplace.
- KEEP LEARNING
Leadership isn’t something you are born with, it’s a skill that you can learn. In life, as well as business, we could all do with evolving in the sense of continuously growing rather than resting on our laurels and plateauing once reaching a particular position; and this is particularly true for business owners.
The mistake many leaders make is they do indeed rest on their laurels once reaching a particular level and this is where arrogance can creep in. The truth is, unless you’re open to evolving and expanding your knowledge then your knowledge and approach might quickly become outdated.
- BE THE CAPTAIN
Of course, there’s a fine line between being a leader and that of a dictator, but it’s an important quality for budding entrepreneurs to possess, as it’s important you take the reins and steer your team in the right direction with enough assertiveness to ensure people listen.
That said, your assertiveness should be directional rather than dictatorial, as nobody likes being told what to do in the sense of having orders barked at them.
It can be a difficult balancing act, as on the one hand you don’t want to be so assertive people lose motivation and feel henpecked, yet it’s equally important people respect your requests and take the required action.
- DON’T MICROMANAGE
It’s important you allow people to “own their task” in the sense that everybody values having the sense of autonomy and purpose with regard to their work; but similarly you do need to provide enough direction and structure for your team to follow.
The challenge, if you start micromanaging, is that your team will quickly get fed up and deflated; they will feel disempowered and disrespected in their ability to get the job done and it will come across as if you don’t value or trust their contribution to a task.
Indeed, micromanaging is one of the quickest ways to lose the support of your team. There are, of course, times when you do need to be on people’s back, such as in matters of continual absence, yet there are automated time and attendance management systems that can take of the bulk of this, meaning you only need to interact with people on this front when issuing a warning or checking everything is okay.