All leaders know they need a strong team behind them if they’re going to be successful. Building a team of loyal employees is more of a challenge than most people think. While the employees look up to the leader for guidance, they also tend to critique the leader.
A big part of being a good leader is keeping your employees on task while encouraging them to remain productive. This is where the fine line comes in. You have to be able to lead by example while still being able to keep control of your shifts.
One of the hallmarks of a great leader is that they’re willing to learn, and they always strive to do better. Anyone who wants to be a strong leader and encourage employee loyalty should avoid doing these things:
#1: Never allow safety violations
Employees want to know that they have a safe work environment. Failing to uphold safety guidelines can make workers uncomfortable, not to mention at risk for workplace injuries. Instead, supervisors should understand the applicable regulations and work to ensure they’re followed.
#2: Never be unwilling to listen
Managers who think they’re always right will run employees away. Being willing to listen to employees might help you improve the business. You never know where the next good idea will come from or when someone will bring up a problem that must be addressed immediately.
#3: Never have inconsistent expectations
Your expectations must remain consistent from one employee to the next. You can’t simply change your expectations without proper notice. It’s usually best to outline expectations on paper so the employees have something tangible to refer to. Periodic evaluations are also beneficial because you can tell the employees their strengths and outline a plan for improving their weaknesses.
#4: Never show favoritism
Favoritism in the workplace is a huge issue that can run good employees away. Even if you have friends who work for you, those friendships can’t play a role in how you handle business matters with them. Treating everyone fairly will help you create a positive workplace culture.
#5: Never expect perfection
Always balance out the good with the bad. It’s disheartening to always hear what you’re doing wrong and never be told what you’re doing right. Remembering that your team members are human and will make mistakes can make you a much better leader.
#6: Never waste resources
Wasting resources is problematic because employees won’t see results for their efforts. An example of this that relates directly to employees is meetings. A pointless meeting that drones on longer than necessary takes workers away from work. In this case, an email addressing a matter might have been a better option because employees can read it when they can.
#7: Never assign busy work
Busy work for employees reduces the time they have to do meaningful work. Provide them with their goals and duties then let them work. Micromanaging employees is just as likely to run them away as assigning busy work.
All leaders should remember that they have to lead by example. Employees will react much better to a manager who shows them what to do than to one who barks orders at them. Taking the time to think about how employees will respond to various leadership styles may help you improve employee retention.