Managers are often assumed to be leaders, without judging their ability to take up this sensitive leadership position. To be a good leader, there are a lot of dos and don'ts that one is required to follow.
It is said that management is based on processes that involve using organizational resources for goal achievement, while leadership is primarily based on behavior that requires qualities such as integrity, honesty, passion, commitment, wisdom, and positivity, to name a few.
There are certain measures that can be adopted to develop or enhance these qualities in a manager, that have been enlisted here.
Keep Your Head on Your Shoulders
A leader should be humble but assertive. An arrogant leader cannot get things done as effectively as a humble one. If you think by being humble you will be taken for a ride, you should work on developing assertiveness.
Being assertive doesn’t mean being rude, neither does it mean being arrogant. It only means you can get work done effectively, without any kind of rebellion. Remember, respect is commanded, not demanded, and the only way to command respect is to keep your head on your shoulders when dealing with your employees.
Don’t Perceive Your Employees as Mere Subordinates
Employees are the most valuable tools in any organization. Your job is to guide them towards achieving the organization’s goals, not tell them exactly what to do.
Employees are not mechanical objects that are meant only to follow orders. They can provide valuable inputs that will help you execute plans effectively as a team. Never undermine their value and think they don’t know about things in the larger perspective.
Sometimes, these employees can come up with inputs you couldn’t have imagined. A good manager is someone who respects her/his employees, and gives them due credit for their efforts towards the achievement of a common goal.
Let employees become familiar with the person you really are. You don’t always have to put up the facade of a stern manager, who is out there only to extract as much work as possible from her/his employees.
Lighten up, add a dash of humor, and be positive, so that your employees don’t feel excess amounts of pressure while working with you. They should like and enjoy working under you. If this is the case, you will see how beautifully the output increases, along with superb quality.
Communication forms the basis of every relationship, be it personal or professional. In effect, communication sums up all that has been mentioned previously.
You need to be approachable so that your employees can communicate with you, bring up problems, and ask for your advice. This is why communication also includes the ability to listen effectively.
You need to communicate effectively with your employees, using a tone that they will not be perceived as autocratic, so that they will follow your orders and execute them in the appropriate manner.
Lead By Example
Only if you practice what you preach, will your employees consider you credible and follow your lead. Dumping all the work on your employees with an upcoming deadline, and heading off for a game of golf yourself, is not going to be appreciated by your employees.
You have to be around, even if you aren’t doing all the work yourself, so that your employees know you are as committed to the job as they are.
Give Credit Where it is Due
You are what you are because of your team, not just because of yourself. You alone cannot achieve anything in a large organization, and the sooner you realize this, the better it is for you.
If you are a success, it because of your team of employees, not just your efforts. As such, make sure you give your entire team the credit for your successful projects.
On the other hand, if criticism is essential, make sure it is constructive and not demeaning. Frame your criticism in a manner that will make your employees willing to make the necessary changes in the way they work or their attitude.
While some of these qualities come naturally to some individuals, for others, it takes a while before they can be developed and successfully implemented. As long as you are passionate and committed to being the ideal manager, who will lead her/his team to success, you will have won half the battle.