A colleague sent me an article identifying the difference between a boss and a leader. If you have responsibility for people in your job, they may refer to you as the boss. Ideally, you want to inspire your direct reports to take the right actions to deliver your product or service to your customer. It’s been my experience that many bosses use intimidation to get results and this can cause frustration and ultimately, result in turnover. You’ve heard the saying, “people join companies and they leave managers.” Managing by intimidation is one reason. To discover if you are a boss or a leader, ask yourself the following questions:
- When approaching a conversation with the employee, do I tell them what needs to be done, how it needs to be done, or when it needs to be done (intimidation)? Or, do I tell them what needs to be done and then invite their input and discuss how and when within acceptable guidelines (inspiration)?
- When discussing an issue with an employee, do I get angry and frustrated and resort to name calling and belittling remarks (intimidation)? Or, do I say I want to talk to them because I appreciate all they do for the company and want to get this situation resolved (inspiration)?
- When problem solving with the team, do I look for fault and blame others (intimidation)? Or, do I take responsibility for my part contribution to the problems and focus on finding a solution (inspiration)?
Many people have learned their management style from the bosses they’ve had in the past. Some people are fortunate to work for leaders and have seen inspiration modeled. Many aren’t so lucky. If you’d like to move from a boss to a leader, we can help. Call us and schedule a time to talk about changing your management style. It’s free, confidential, and it helps.