Don’t Hate Me, Love Me…Okay: How About a Little Respect
How many of you feel you have good relationships with your employees? Would you like to know what they think? Managers often have a high opinion of themselves when their employees see the world very differently.
A Gallup study recently discovered that nearly 20 percent of managers are considered bad by their employees. According to a recent Spherion study, 45 percent of employees believe their relationship with their manager has been affected by the recession and 74 percent say it was a negative effect. What are the other 26 percent of managers doing that is making the difference?
One main reason managers are considered “bad” is a strong need for control. Face it, controlling managers are annoying! Managers that have strong preferences about how work is completed or are uncomfortable with ambiguity tend to try to create expected outcomes and want to have everything work a certain way. This behavior impacts whether they ask questions, what types of questions they ask, and how much they talk versus listen. Life is not predictable. And it would not be fun if it was predictable. So stop trying to control your employees.
If you are a controlling manager, here’s a letter that your employees might write to you, if they could.
If you really want to improve performance, realize that you only help me when you make me think. Stop being the expert. Some managers act like the expert because they have an ego, some because they lack confidence, some because it’s just easier to tell others what to do. But great managers know they don’t need to be the expert. In fact, great managers create real bench strength on their team and they are comfortable with the idea that their people may know more than they do.
Let me bring you opportunity. I enjoy doing that and it’s rewarding to me. When opportunity knocks great managers let it through. They do not hold their employees back. These managers promote cross training, provide special assignments and support promotions for their employees even if it means losing them. In fact, great managers who lose employees to advancement opportunities see it as a badge of honor.
Do not juggle me. I am not a thing or a task. Employees want a manager who treats them with respect, pays attention to them and their needs, and listens during meetings, rather than multi-tasking with electronic devices. Too many managers think they can complete emails, presentations and other tasks when talking with their employees. All they end up doing is devaluing them.
We are not all the same — value me. Great managers are flexible and meet people where they are. They understand each person brings different talents and gifts to the workplace. A great manager does not judge employees because they are different. Great managers focus on results; makes sure each team member feels welcome and has the potential to succeed.
Why won’t you play “connect?” The very best managers know that getting strong productivity and keeping great employees is not a game. They understand it is about helping create mutually beneficial bonds between employees and the organization. These managers connect employee’s work to the vision of the company, promote strong team relationships, and illustrate why everyone should have a sense of pride.
Let me out of jail. The best managers create a safe environment. They know that fear paralyzes their people. These managers create workplaces where transparency rules and talking about concerns is not viewed as a weakness. When employees fear their boss or work environment, they act as though they are in jail. They stop being creative, they do not take risks, and most importantly they take their eyes off of the customer.
What do great managers do differently? They see the bigger picture and understand how their people fit into that picture. They realize they are there for the employees and not the other way around. They lead.
See original article at Workplace Safety and HR