If you’ve just become or are about to become a boss, you need to know how to manage. Even if you understand management in a general sense, there’s still the all-important matter of handling your employees. You need to be able to recognize how to mentor and support them while keeping your relationship professional, among other things. When you follow these tips, you’ll be able to manage your employees like a boss.
Stick to Your Boundaries
You can be a friend to your employees, but it’s different than the typical type of friendship. In the office, friendship between you and your employees should not go any further than pleasant, work-appropriate conversation. If you suspect an employee is crossing any sort of line, do your best to bring the conversation back to where it should be. Should they not get the message or refuse to listen, you need to take further action. Remind them (and the rest of your team, if necessary) about what sort of communication and conversation topics are appropriate in the workplace. This kind of reinforcement should help set everyone straight. If anyone refuses to listen, they might need to be considered for termination.
Motivation Is Key
A lack of motivation can spread like a cold around the office. Your role as a boss means you play a bigger role in motivation for your employees than you might realize. While there are many ways to motivate employees, they all rely on the same principles. Trust is essential to motivation. When your employees have faith in you, they feel more engaged in their work. Another essential part of motivation is positive reinforcement. Employees who know they’ve been recognized will do all they can to uphold that image. Do your part to keep your employees motivated and see just how much better the results are. Extending this sense of motivation across the office means that it can likely come back to you. When people are motivated to do their jobs, the workplace can become all the more harmonious.
Keep Them Engaged
Having nothing to do at work can be just as irritating as having too much to do. A lack of assignments makes your employees feel as though there’s nothing for them to do and that their presence isn’t as important as they assumed. While some work periods might be lighter than others, there should always be things for your team to do. Being able to get straight to work keeps employees goal-oriented and focused on their jobs. If you enter a slow period, then take this as an opportunity to listen to employee feedback and improve business processes. Allowing employees to be involved in the improvement and organization process works to improve morale and keep them invested in company success.
Give Genuine Praise
Your employees should be savvy enough to tell the difference between actual compliments and things you say to try and ‘butter them up.’ Praise is great when it’s delivered sincerely. When an employee impresses you, let them know. You might also consider giving them some sort of commendation, like a certificate or pay raise. It’s great when the entire team puts in a strong effort. Consider buying lunch for the whole office when they meet a certain goal. Being a good boss means doing all you can to keep morale high.
Be an Active Part of the Team
As a boss, you need to do your part to show what the business means to you. If you’re constantly holed up in your office, it might make you seem standoffish and uninterested in management. There’s no need for you to get desperate and try to prove that you’re a hard worker, but you can certainly put in a bit of sweat. Don’t view your employees as subservient people who are there to do your bidding. Work alongside them so that they realize that you’re all on the same team. They’ll feel better about you as a manager if they don’t sense any sort of inflated ego.
Give Them Deadlines
Deadlines help to keep your employees accountable. Without clear deadlines, your business is going to suffer. Work with your employees at their own pace to help them get to where you need them to be. Remember to measure their progress, not by where you need them to be, but by where they were and are now. Development is accomplished step-by-step. As a boss, you should be there for every stage of your employees’ development, from the initial orientation for various roles to when it’s ultimately time for the training wheels to come off.
You might not want to be the boss that tells people what to do, but delegation is part of management. You can respect your employees while also maintaining a culture of professionalism. Your employees will return the favor as long as you show that you’re willing to listen to them.
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