Cliché but true:
• Your people are your asset, and, therefore, your people must be your priority.
• You are only as successful as your team are.
• If you want to lead, you’d better lead by example.
Guide new starters
It’s important to not get carried away by the excitement of new hires and forget that they need to be managed from their first day. Such discussions should include clarifying targets and KPIs, progression potential, work ethic, preferred ways of communication, and management style. It’s imperative to be clear from the get go.
Stay true to your word and practice what you preach, and you will never have to tell your team twice. Otherwise, your team will receive confusing messages and will find it difficult to trust you, if they do not know what to expect from you.
It’s tough but your team need you to establish rules and good habits for them. Reward achievement but ensure that unacceptable practices and behaviours get the required attention, and that the message is clear.
Provide timely feedback
Timely is potentially more important than feedback. If feedback is not timely, it will not carry as much influence. Be prepared, be collected, be honest and ensure that it is the facts that come across, not your manner. Ensure that feedback is understood, and actions are planned.
Say well done
Recognise and appreciate quantitative and qualitative achievement. In most jobs, it is numbers that bring profits, but a high-performance team needs team workers to motivate and coordinators to get things done, as well as target-driven high achievers, in order to maintain consistent success. Find ways to award all skills that help the team succeed, at the desired contribution level.
Say thank you
No need to thank your team daily for doing their job. However, additional effort to help colleagues, to get a project across the line, to lead the team in your absence, and to contribute any way that brings the desired results, should be appreciated.
Protect your team
When you trust your team and believe in their ability, you need to fight for them. If the importance of your team’s hard work and achievements is not recognised, you need to step in and take action either to help the team improve or to give them opportunities to shine.
Celebrate with your team
Do not let achievement go unnoticed. Celebrations motivate the team as well as showing them what success means, better and quicker than training does.
Listen to your team
Whatever you do, do not hide behind closed doors. Your team are smart, hard-working people; you hired them, after all! They are doing the job daily and can help make improvements. Listen to and address their feedback.
Help them grow professionally
Promoting your team members and encouraging their professional development is sign of a confident and successful leader. This is one of the traits that make the difference between workload managers and leaders, who can significantly contribute to the organisation.