Every entrepreneur who has plans to grow and scale their business can certainly benefit from assessing how they’re managing new hires and considering ways for vast improvement.
When it comes to managing people, you could possibly be doing the wrong things; making small, but impactful mistakes, that go unnoticed because they are such an integral part of your day.
No leader can grow without evaluating themselves. Every entrepreneur should make it a habit to do so periodically. So, here’s a look at six mistakes you should definitely course correct and avoid.
Mistake #1: Refusing to admit when you’re wrong.
You may hesitate to admit your mistakes. It’s possible that you have a fear that your employees won’t take you seriously if you tell them all you were wrong. In reality, the exact opposite is going to occur. You are human, and you are just as prone to occasional errors as everyone else. If you make a mistake, you need to explain to your employees that you’re aware of what you did wrong. They need to know what steps you’re going to take to prevent the same mistake from occurring in the future. It will give them comfort, piece of mind, and a better sense of trust. It takes a strong man (or woman) to admit a wrong, and your employees will see that.
Mistake #2: Employing a useless assistant.
You’ve got a lot to do, and you definitely need an assistant. Don’t settle for the first person who asks for the job. This person needs to be the extension of you when you can’t be there. They’re your stand in when things are busy. You need to make sure this person is similar enough to who you are, and very organized. An assistant should be someone you feel comfortable empowering, versus a task rabbit who cannot do anything independently. Your assistant shouldn’t hold you back.
Mistake #3: Not training and coaching employees.
Simply informing an employee about what areas you feel they could perform better in is not enough. You need to set aside time to have one-on-one interaction with these employees. It may not be their inability to do their job correctly – they may be misunderstanding exactly what the expectations are, and they aren’t getting the valuable assistance they need. Don’t be condescending, but concerned. Show them that you’re willing to help and forgive them for their mistakes, and they’ll be more likely to forgive you for yours.
Mistake #4: Having a consistently bad attitude.
You aren’t better than everyone else. That’s not what being a manager means. It means that, over time, you developed the right skill set to fill the position, and you weren’t born that way. If you use your authority to make others feel smaller, they’re not going to comply. They’ll be too busy resenting you to take you seriously, and they’re already sending their resumes out for better jobs. Learn the difference between polite, effective authority and throwing your weight around. You’re a boss, not a bully.
Mistake #5: Not listening well, or at all.
Employees will have a lot of concerns and complaints that you will be expected to listen to. Just nodding and letting them go on without retaining that information will come back to bite you. You could miss something that’s a workplace safety issue, or a cue that a major project is about to fall apart. You’ve got a lot going on, and sometimes it’s hard to deal with it all at once. Learn to organize your thoughts and priorities better, so everyone can have your ear when they need it.
Mistake #6: Being unrealistic.
There are people above you, and you’re understandably very eager to impress them. The worst mistake you can make is placing the burden of your success entirely on your employees. Don’t assign anyone a goal that you couldn’t complete yourself in the same amount of time, and be realistic about what your capabilities are. If you drive your employees too hard, they’re going to burn out. Overall, productivity will decrease when they’re too tired to pick their feet up off the ground. Always assign manageable workloads, and cater them to an employee’s skillset and ability.
Ultimately, you attract more flies with honey than you do with vinegar, and no flies at all if you’re waving a swatter around, threatening to smash all of them. There’s always something you can be doing to make your employee’s lives better while increasing the capability of your workplace, and there’s never a wrong time to start.
This article has been edited and condensed.
Monica Wells is a part of the team at BizDb, an online UK companies check platform featuring contact data, financial reports and company filings. Monica has a strong background in team leadership. She is a passionate writer and a great advocate of new technologies and everything digital for professional development. Connect with @BizdbUK on Twitter.
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