47 Tips To Be A Better Boss
As you all know I speak frequently on leadership. As I was preparing to speak a few months ago I reached out on social media to ask people what tips they had for being a better boss. All of the responses I received were great and I thought that I would pass them along to you.
Michele Vercimak Set clear expectations with established timelines.
Kenna Vallejos Listen and acknowledge “good ideas”. This doesn’t mean all are implemented it does however build productivity and connection.
Breaelle Eddington I like a direct boss. Some one that can gives me constructive criticism on how to be better at my job.
Kami Orange Find out how people like to be acknowledged. Some people really love to be applauded in front of the whole office. Some people really love an email saying they did a great job that they can print off and keep forever. Some people like more time off and perks.
Just because you like a particular type of acknowledgment does not mean the people that work for you also like that type of acknowledgment. They might actually dislike the exact same kind of acknowledgment that you personally prefer.
If you really want to acknowledge people for doing a great job, find out what is meaningful for them and do that as much as possible.
Jeri Mae Rowley I want my boss to take good care of themselves–take a lunch break, exercise, go home to their family, laugh, ask for help, gather a good support group. Bosses burn out and singe the whole organization.
Ashlee Houghton Listen to the employees!!!
Jocelyn Harris Listen to your employees and not just think you have all the answers.
Heather Heslington Snyder Lead by example. Be the type of professional your subordinates will want to model themselves after.
Linda Joy Slagowski Not threatening emails with consequences if things don’t get done. Owning their limitations & mistakes. No favorites
Hollie Case Baxter Know how to do the job of the people you are in charge of.
Julie Phillips Shepherd Listen to employees and take appropriate action when necessary.
Kirsten Klug Trust. Don’t stand over my shoulder to watch me work
April Saunders Anderton Learn about different personality or energy types and recognize specific traits in your employees. Use that knowledge to assign tasks and to manage and motivate your employees.
Amberly Moon Kariuki Don’t ask for ideas or suggestions if you already know what you’re going to do and are not really open to ideas.
Jennifer Bottema Hinton I have always worked for small business owners. Do not complain about how tight money is or the lack of it (therefore eliminating employee raises an bonuses) and then spend excessively on personal life style. It destroys employee morale. If you want to spend on you, you earned it, but do not minimize your employee’s contributions by saying you are financially strapped/struggling.
Debra E Andrew Reward for great ideas, don’t just steal them as your own and keep the profits for yourself. Give room for growth, advancement, and pay increases. Don’t expect 5 times work for the same pay. If you add to responsibilities increase pay.
Whitney Lee Geertsen My advice is provide at least some training, listen to employees especially when they have particular skill sets, hire and accommodate disabled workers, and provide safety equipment and protocols for work hazards.
My first job in a seasonal grounds maintenance crew, I was dropped off alone at the cemetery and told to make it look pretty. All I had were hand tools and it wasn’t until halfway through was I shown were more efficient tools were. The third year same city different boss I had no tools (they would disappear over winter) and broke my own shovel. In horticulture, I knew more than my boss, but he was there because of his knowledge of sprinkling and lawn maintenance. During my three years, I had little help and was placed in charge of 40+ flower beds. I was inadequately trained and equipped for herbicide application.
(Note: I am autistic and struggle getting work. After my time with the city I developed a barrage of health problems. )
KyAnn Betz As an executive level leader with hundreds of employees here are mine:
1. No favorites, love them all and treat them all the same
2. Have a clear escalation plan, my employees know when and how to ask for my help, they are all amazing but even Superman needs the Justice League occasionally
3. Have a written employee handbook that covers roles, responsibilities, code of conduct, and expectations, make sure it’s on everyone’s desk
4. When there is praise it’s them, when there is punishment it’s me, I am ultimately accountable for everything and everyone
5. Don’t hire a watchdog and then do the barking yourself, this makes me NUTS when leaders do this
6. Have a suggestion box and actually answer the suggestions or implement them. I message my employees in the bathrooms through a Restroom Reader that I write every 10 work days, I answer their suggestions and tell them what’s coming up. They LOVE the Restroom Reader, I’m hilarious and I give it to them straight.
7. Calm down, your demeanor and energy becomes infectious, I work in nuclear weapons so this might be more important in my job, calm down as a leader, think it through, my employees know it’s not the 9th inning unless I say it’s the 9th inning, if everything is a crisis, nothing is
8. Rewards don’t have to be big, each of my hundreds of employees gets a hand written birthday card from me, I give a ton of high fives, and I paint “You Rock!” on regular rocks and give them out
9. Don’t be afraid of crucial conversations, if someone needs to be disciplined or dealt with do it fast, sometimes with shock and awe, but don’t delay it, there’s a reason they call me The Kraken behind my back, I deal with it head on and while I’m not always nice, I’m fair and morale is high because I prune the non performers.
10. Leaders take care of yourselves, sleep, eat, use your vacation days, unplug on weekends
Cindee Leavitt Jessop Listen. Don’t just talk. Listen.
Janet Thaeler My pet peeve is when bosses call you into a meeting and it’s not normal timing so you feel like you’re in trouble. Also I had a boss give me a glowing performance review in person but turned in a different version that wasn’t as stellar. Didn’t love that. I always appreciate honest feedback, well delivered, even if it’s to improve something. It’s hurtful when you find out about negative feedback from another source. The thing I love is when a boss has my back and I know there’s mutual trust.
Patti Merrill Cook Always appreciate, people who are appreciated work harder. Be clear in directions and expectations. Offer flexible schedules when possible so people can work at their best pace.
Suzanne Mulet The kind that drive to make you feel so inadequate that you fall apart. They get the smug look, like, “Finally broke her. I win.” And then cry all the way home. #TrueStory
Tammy Joy Lane Don’t have it so the only time you talk to your people is when they are in trouble. Don’t micromanage, Do appreciate, Don’t be shady
Stacy Bernal Don’t send a text on Friday that reads: “We need to talk on Monday.” Thus ruining my entire weekend. (Actually, that’s not true– I was in Nashville with friends to run a half marathon so I didn’t LET it ruin my weekend. But still. Pretty D-bag move.)
Jolene Griffin Durrant Don’t ask your employees to do anything you wouldn’t do
Shauna Light Talking to others about me when I can hear them. Such passive aggressive communication. Blaming everything in the office on a fall guy.
Cindy DeHart Check in with your team individually regularly, listen, provide feedback, learn from each other. Team members that feel acknowledged and input is valued are better individual members of a team, and produce stronger workloads. Don’t use examples of anyone we know. Ha! That part is a joke!
Adrienne Thomas Acknowledgement is key.
Laura Jeffs Be able to communicate with your employees and handle conflict between them professionally. Know how to delegate!!
Tori Christensen Nathan has pretty awful bosses: don’t hover, don’t put off payday until you feel like saying, don’t schedule meetings Friday at 5pm because that way it isn’t taking up “work time.” Pay people fairly, not just according to what their degree is, but to how they serve the company. Don’t make salaried people punch in and out. And did I mention not hovering?
Laura Jeffs Don’t micromanage!
Tambra Puro West Don’t be a boss, be a leader. Get engaged with your employees and get to know them (echoing comments above about praise, rewards, work and personality types). Not everyone works the same and everyone has a life outside of work. Don’t over-react and jump to conclusions from hearsay. Try to get the full story before making changes or taking action.
Madeline Faiella Treat people as a team, with respect. Not as underlings. Life can change in an instant.💖💖💖
Becky Ruths Dont ask your employees to do something you are unwilling to do.
Julie C. Hatch Quit micro-managing.
Jentrey Potter See people as people. I’ve never worked in the corporate world but I’ve seen enough of what my husband has gone through and it’s sad how often they forget that they’re dealing with real humans.
Kim Kauffman Everybody wants to be somebody… Imagine that everyone has an invisible sign on their chest that says.. MAKE ME FEEL SPECIAL!! Recognition is important. The best bosses are the ones that love to give recognition.. no matter how big or small! People work hard when they feel appreciated!!