Here Comes The Boss… HIDE!!!
Do you feel that your employees are afraid of you? Do you find them scurrying to the safety of their cubicles when you enter the room? Do you find it hard getting them to open up to tell you the truth about challenges in the workplace?
Well, first of all, congratulations for reading on. Not every leader dares to admit that they need to improve. Many of them easily point the blame on their subordinates, the culture, and everything else before they turn their finger on themselves.
Fact is, there are plenty of people in the same situation as you who lead in different styles and get different results. My mentor once told me that if I am not happy with the results I get out of my team, ask this question: “Can any other leader lead this team better than me?” And if you’re honest and humble, usually you will think of a role model or a famous leader who would be able to lead better. Then the conclusion is simple: I’m not as good as that leader yet. So how can I be better?
Here are some questions you can ask yourself to determine what you may need to improve to lead your team better:
Are you moody?
Being a moody person myself, I notice that the mood of my team follows my mood. When I get fussy in the office, everyone is tense. When I display negative emotion, people fall silent. When I raise my voice, no one else speaks their ideas in meetings. Usually their heads start to look down and I lose their eye contact.
So now I watch my mood. I even remove myself from the office when I feel that my mood is not appropriate for a leader… or when I feel that I start getting snappy and edgy with people. I go out for a breath of fresh air (if that’s possible in Jakarta) or just a nice cup of coffee or I work from home. Whatever I do, I remove myself from the environment.
Being moody makes you unpredictable. Unpredictability makes people feel insecure and makes the situation feel risky. In an insecure environment people are more likely to take on a passive observer role and wait for instructions. And usually the more passive they are, the moodier you get. Ah, viscious cycle!!
Do you have the need to be right?
If you’re the type who’s always right, you fall into the category of CD Bosses. Capek Deh!!! Yep, it tires people out to argue with you. Every point is an argument and usually you’ll find your cunning way to make yourself right and the other person wrong. Yes, you’re probably smarter than your employees … but why do you have the need to be right? When one is right, usually someone else is wrong. Rightness is a win-lose principle.
With all your smarts, leadership challenges you to find a win-win solution, where every idea is just interesting, including yours. Every point can be seen from at least 2 sides. And with proper coaching questions, a leader finds a way to make it a win-win agreement. People willingly follow knowing that they were involved in the process of making the decision. People come out of the discussion having learned something new from your wisdom. This includes getting rid of the words ‘BUT’ and replacing it with ‘AND.’
Leadership challenges you from being SMART to WISE.
Leaders… You are gifted with the talent of leadership and given the position to execute it. You are trusted with a team of people who look to you to guide them and give them a better life. You are one in a million.
When put in a position of leadership, TAKE CHARGE. Don’t just be in charge of your team, the office, or your field… firstly be in charge of YOURSELF. Be aware of how you think, behave, and what you believe. You’ll be amazed how your own thoughts and behaviors greatly projects itself in the behavior of your team and the results of your company.
Make it a great week!
– Cynthia Wihardja –