In the recent past, remote work has become a household name, following the COVID-19 Pandemic that has seen more people work from home to practice social distancing and just keep safe.
However, this has left many managers at a turmoil, not knowing how to manage their employees, as most times, remote working could lead to employees drifting from work and attend to other things.
However, at this time and as a manager, you wouldn’t want to micromanage your employees or even undermanage them, though at times, it is inevitable. Different managers have different leadership styles, however, depending on the style of your leadership you could foster a great or bad company culture.
An under manager’s signature behaviours include weak performance management, a tendency to avoid conflicts with employees, and generally poor accountability. They give scant feedback on their employees’ work and make minimal efforts to get up-to-speed.
On the other hand, over- or a micromanager, are too involved in their employees’ day-to-day activities. They incessantly keep tabs on team members and request updates on where projects stand. They might even take pleasure in constantly making corrections.
Unlike under-managers, these bosses barely cut their employees any slack. While their commitment to the organization might be unquestionable, their faith in their employees is far from it.
As a result, subordinates have no opportunity to figure things out or learn from their mistakes — which are necessary and important teachable moments.
Looking at these two extremes, they are equally important to any business but again they could build or break employees morale. So where do you strike the balance and maybe become Middle-way managers or effective leaders?
Effective leaders recognize that their role is to assign projects and let people figure out how to complete them. It’s important to explain benchmarks and deliverables the “what.” But then have faith that your team members are competent enough to get there — the “how.”
After believing and trusting in your employees with the projects, an effective leader will now give regular feedback. Check on how far they are on the work and give feedback bit by bit. As you give your feedback ensure that you are not doing it to make your employees feel demoralized but you are focusing on cultivating strengths just as much as improving weaknesses.
Also, recognize that each of your staff member is a complex individual avoid treating them from a group perspective or but solely as employees. Therefore tailor-make their feedback and interactions accordingly.
Having the “do as I say” attitude characterized mostly by micromanagers, doesn’t necessarily make you like able and doesn’t earn you the respect of your team. An effective leader is one who leads by example and does what they expect everyone else to do.
If you expect your team to be hard workers, then you should be a hard worker too. By practicing what you preach, you earn the respect and loyalty of your team, and before long, you’ll see that they’re following your example.
Resolve conflict by tackling the problem right away. They listen and ask questions. Rather than instructing, they guide team members to a solution.
While dealing with employees an effective leader will choose to focus more on the solution as opposed to the problem and playing ’blame game’.
Instead of worrying and complaining about the issues, they focus on the objectives and then turn their energies toward creating a plan and strategy to achieve those objectives. Also prioritize to get the most important and urgent things done first.
I remember in an interview way back with a leading Telecom Company In the country, the company manager once told me that to keep his employees motivated, they always had a bell, in their office, where, with every sale closed, the staff would ring the bell and the whole team would celebrate the employee who closed the deal, no matter how small it is. You see this in a way made the team more focused and goal-oriented. It also got to boost the confidence of others.
For Micromanagers I would think they would need the spotlight to keep their inflated ego fed while under managers would care less. However, to become an effective leader, once in a while stand back and celebrate accomplishments of your team.
It is the small acts that honestly count. A leader is only as good as the team behind them. By sharing the glory, an effective leader can earn the admiration and respect of the team.
Effective leaders, particularly during hard times, are out in front of the organization sharing plans for the future. They don’t hide behind closed doors or conveniently delegate important communication needs to others.
Employees will look to leaders for information, clear expectations, and the status of what’s going on when the chips are down. Great leaders are especially adept at “walking their four corners.”
Communicate with your team and let them know of your expectations. Excellent communication skills are necessary to become an effective leader.
However, communication is not just about expressing what you want to happen — it’s also about being able to truly listen to others.
An effective leader not only expresses their ideas and strategies persuasively and clearly but also truly listens to feedback with an open mind.
As a leader it is important to always treat your employees with empathy, this goes a long way and helps build a healthy company culture.
Communicate as often, get regular feedback and simply find ways to motivate your team, remember as a leader beyond the numbers, you will be remembered from the legacy you leave behind.