Leadership can be a tough ask. Here are some tips that should help you manage your business more successfully.
1. Communicate openly and often – Set the tone as people need to know what is expected of them. Give a sense of optimism, and ensure communication is a two-way process. Communication flow is key, supply by giving enthusiastic examples.
2. Be a team, not a collection of individuals – You are only as good as the people you work with, don’t produce a ‘winners’ culture but provide balanced teams, whether that is with clients, customers or internally.
3. Match people’s talents to their role – Work should be challenging, interesting and fun, otherwise employees would become bored and dissatisfied. Understand their strengths, and motivate by allocating tasks, clients and challenges to will suit them.
4. Guide, don’t direct – Give people autonomy and responsibility. Trust them. Speak of vision and desire. Let others learn by experience, and provide opportunity to develop skills. Don’t take them for granted.
5. Recognise and reward good performance – Praising people generates enthusiasm and builds loyalty, both between work-relationships and client-relationships. However, it’s important to provide coaching for those who needs to improve.
6. Make your meetings upbeat and inspirational – Speak openly and communicate well. Set and agree clear goals and energise people to hold onto your business visions and values. Stay flexible and respond to any opportunities that may arise.
7. Find ways to say yes – It’s easy to say no. Even the wildest ideas will get resentment, so say ‘why not’ and explore the idea first.
8. Learn from any mistakes – It’s impossible for businesses to get everything right all the time. Mistakes are evitable, but treat them as learning opportunities. Don’t be afraid to take risks, as smart mistakes will provide the experience to achieve something worthwhile.
9. Trust your instincts and believe in yourself – Dealing with ambiguity and stress can be emotionally draining. Stay focused, and trust your judgement. There will be tough times, but it’s how you react to those is the key in progression.
10. Manage your time – Don’t confuse activity with progress. We spend a lot of time being busy. Make what you do count.
Posted by Steven Woodgate
We, at Microsoft, are happy to announce ‘Talking Business’ to help entrepreneurs and business owners’ succeed. We believe in your ability to innovate and in the ability of technology to help, so to support ‘Talking Business’ we have many resources available for businesses like you. We have an informative newsletter, blog posts by people in the industry, and a community looking to help small business succeed.
Follow us on twitter – @MicrosoftSB, or use the hashtag #TalkingBusiness to find out more information.