As a manager, you have a great responsibility to help your employees grow and succeed in their roles. However, you may unconsciously fail to do things that hurt your employees' productivity—increasing your awareness around the activities that demotivate your employees and help you mitigate the potential harm of unconscious leadership.
4 Common Mistakes
Employees have feelings and emotions that impact their work. They may face personal or professional challenges that affect their mood and motivation. If you ignore their emotional needs, you may lose their trust and respect and damage their morale.
You should show empathy and compassion by listening to their concerns, offering support and guidance, and helping them cope with stress. The reality is that emotions are contiguous, and if you have employees that are frequently sad, angry, or apathetic, their feelings could impact you and your team.
Being attuned to your employees' emotions and adjusting expectations based on their emotional state can help you get the most out of them. When they are feeling good, you can encourage them to do more. When they are stressed or anxious, you can help them avoid burnout. If they have lingering issues that negatively impact the quality of work they deliver, you can encourage them to seek professional help.
Employees need to feel confident and valued in their work. When employees toil at jobs, day in, and day out, without recognition or acknowledgment, they often question their value. As employees begin to question their value, they frequently become more needy, less confident, and require more direction.
There are two ways that managers typically undermine their employees' self-esteem. One is by failing to notice and acknowledge their good work. The other is providing frequent and unnecessary questioning and oversight. Both can erode an employee's confidence and self-esteem.
You can boost their self-esteem by recognizing their achievements, praising their efforts, and rewarding their performance. You can also be more selective in only providing feedback when it legitimately adds value and provides employees with more opportunities for self-discovery and reflectional learning.
Neglecting training and development.
Employees need to learn new skills and knowledge to keep up with the changing demands of their work. Everyone has room for improvement, and you provide significant value to your employees when you help them identify areas for improvement, craft development plans, and provide resources for professional growth.
Neglecting their training and development may limit their growth, reduce their competitiveness, and create skill gaps. Lack of development opportunities is consistently cited as one of the top reasons employees leave companies.
You should provide employees with opportunities for training and development, such as coaching, mentoring, workshops, courses, or online resources. This investment can help them perform their current roles at a higher level, position them for advancement opportunities, and demonstrate that you are invested in their success.
Employees need to know how they are doing in their work, what they are doing well, and what they can improve. They must also know how their work aligns with the organization's vision, mission, and goals.
With this clarity, employees can better focus their time and attention on addressing performance opportunities and pursuing activities that generate the most value for them and the organizations.
If you withhold feedback, you may create confusion, frustration, and resentment among your employees. They have to guess what is important and what they need to do to improve. This can result in stalled growth or even regressions in performance.
You should provide them with constructive feedback that is specific, timely, and actionable. This feedback should be fact-based and balanced. Seek feedback from customers, co-workers, and other stakeholders, and provide the feedback with the intent of helping employees grow and improve.
You can help your employees thrive at work by avoiding these common mistakes. You can also benefit from increased productivity, engagement, loyalty, and retention. Remember, you are only as good as the people around you. As you invest in helping them to perform at their highest level, you better position yourself and your organization to reach its full potential.
Thank you for reading this blog
Dorian Cunion is an Executive Coach and Business Consultant with Your Path Coaching and Consulting. He is a former retail executive with over 20 years of experience in the retail industry. He is a Co-Active coach who focuses on helping professionals and small business owners overcome insecurities, knowledge gaps, and lack of direction. He does this by assisting clients to tap into their values, recognize their strengths, and develop actionable strategies for growth.
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