Living in the Leadership era, some managers still use the old hierarchical management tools in their work. That clashes the company and team culture and causes stress in the teams. The new reality demands that the old ways have to be forgotten or fully transformed if the leaders want to achieve sustainable results. The team’s vision has changed in a direction from the leader knows it all, to everyone in the group is an expert with a valuable contribution to the final result, and the leader’s role is to glue the team members to achieve better results together. Nothing so hard, you say. Think again, because as published in the HBR study back from 2019 thirty-seven percent of leaders still struggle to sustain a balanced relationship that boosts team results. While developing my leadership path, I have learned several rules on how to moderate team energy, passion, and engagement to achieve more significant results. These rules have helped me to reach goals twenty percent faster without losing focus and quality in our work. I want to learn them. Well, keep reading down:
We often hear someone talk about the objectivity of a decision. The talk is generated by the person’s internal feeling that there have been favorable and non-favorable people, conclusions, or roles in a particular situation. And that has been seen or filled as unfair from that same person. The role of the leader is to balance that feeling of unfairness and fight it. What is reasonable here is to focus on listening to all proposals from the team or all positions on the current topic, involving the team in the final decision or solution, and talking not to point on a particular position or decision.
Stay open to their experience
Everyone has its unique experience in life and work. And showing appreciation for that unique experience and way of doing things is crucial to keep people motivated and engaged at work. No matter if the leader knows the answers, they must learn to give the stage to the other person. The experience people gain moving through their paths in life and work develops them as individuality and professional. For the leader to respect the way chosen, it is essential to position themselves as supporters and enablers than as stoppers. Supporting uniqueness creates a unique experience and is the basis for achieving more significant results uniquely and innovatively.
Hold an intention that they are more excellent and more powerful than how they show now
The greatness in work comes from the given support level. The leader’s role is to support people to develop and show the potential. It is easily seen in the maxima “The impact that the whole has is greater than the sum of its parts.” Supporting each individual to develop their potential is crucial to show full support for the team’s development and achievement of the goals established.
Ask great open-ended questions
One of the most misunderstood tools in day-to-day management and leadership are the questions. We often listen to answer and not provide support. And we often ask the question, predefined to deliver closed answers with one or two words or sentences. And when we get those answers, we blame the other party for them. It is crucial for a great leader and supporter. If the leader formulates its question in a matter that provokes explanation and the need to develop a story while answering, he will understand the situation and the other person’s point of view more clearly. And at the same time, the tremendous open-ended question will allow the conversation to evolve.
Offer wisdom or feedback directly
What leaders and managers often miss is the timing for teaching and giving feedback. There is no point in letting someone fail and then teach him the lesson that could have saved you and his time. The leader must offer wisdom and knowledge right when he or she sees that it is needed. Recognizing the moment for giving the understanding makes the knowledge’s impact more powerful and lets the person feel like someone cares about him. It is the same with the feedback. More than nine years ago, I had a leader who offered me feedback only at our annual review meetings. During the other time, I have acted blindly without knowing if what I was doing is acceptable or not. That made me create a lot of blind spots that were revealed to me once a year. And, of course, my performance and results struggled. To avoid this mistake, the leader must offer direct and honest feedback right at the moment or shortly after an event that needs feedback. Delaying the input does not help either the employee or the leader. It only makes things more complicated and unlocks unneeded defense mechanisms.
Do not take credit for the outcome
The most discouraging practice for the employee has always been for someone else to credit what the employee has completed. It is like a reflex, but many leaders talk with WE when they share a group achievement and with I when they talk about how the achievement is managed through time. This practice gives the employee the feeling of not being recognized, which often plays a crucial role in dropping performance. A true leader steps back and recognizes the effort people have put into completing a task or achieving a planned result. Having in mind that the leader role in controlling himself is crucial to sustain support to the team in time and ensure excellent results in the future
Support is at the heart of a good leadership role. If today’s leaders want to achieve better results, they will have to focus on supporting teams development on a physical and mental level and forget about actions like favoritism and lousy recognition. Everything else can be easily achieved by asking the right questions and helping team members to walk their way toward success.