Be the Boss Everyone Wants to Work For

Sections of this topic

    The outstanding boss is more than a good manager; she’s a good leader. Pay attention to these 10 tips and be the boss everyone wants to work for.

    1. Have a vision.
    Before you can lead your people, you’ll need something to lead them to. Where are you going? How will you get there? How will you know when you have arrived?

    2. Let people see their value.
    Show them constantly how their jobs and your department are contributing to organization’s overall goals. Let them know what they do matters.

    3. Give yourself permission to lead.
    Overcome the discomfort of having a measure of control over another person’s life. It can be unsettling at first, but it is necessary for quality leadership.

    4. Be in the eye of the hurricane.
    When things go wrong, you can turn your attention to assigning blame or solving the problem. Good bosses choose the second and do it calmly and deliberately. In times of crisis people need a solid, confident presence to lean on.

    5. Give yourself time to lead.
    Set aside a portion of your day for nothing more than being with your people, hearing their problems, reinforcing the vision and communicating your support.

    6. Get in up to your elbows.
    Work hard with your people; relax with them; laugh with them. If you show that you’re really not above them, you will enhance their commitment to you.

    7. Deal with surprises.
    People and issues arrive unannounced. It’s your job to filter them for urgency and importance and help employee stay focused on priorities not problems.

    8. Give up your old job.
    You have a new job so don’t hang on to your old one. This can be hard. It’s because of your previous success that you’ve been promoted. But failure to let go of your old job causes more problems than anything else.

    9. Don’t play favorites.
    Not only has your job changed; your workplace relationships have changed. Yesterday you had co-workers; today you have employees. While it’s only natural to like some individuals more than others you no longer have that luxury.

    10. Finally, manage.
    Your employees will expect you to deal with poor performers at work. If they see someone getting away with it, they may think that they can as well. If you’re fair and decisive, your good performers will give you their hard earned respect and best effort.

    Management Success Tip:

    Regularly take stock of your leadership. Reflect on your progress every quarter. Identify issues that require close attention and ways to deal with them before they grow into big headaches. Also see What Makes a Great Boss, Staying Sane While Leading Others and Managing Is Hard Work: Avoid These Mistakes.

    Do you want to develop your Management Smarts?