23 Ideas to be a better boss

The only way to have a healthy, sustainable business is to be a good leader for your employees. You need them to run your business, so the success or failure of your business comes from how well you take care of your staff. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of your customers and your business.

Here are some ideas to help.

First, you want to avoid the things “bad” bosses do, like these:

  • Yell at your employees (It’s amazing but this still happens.)
  • Treat your employees worse than your customers
  • Think being a boss is about giving orders
  • “Manage by Temper” (you focus only on whatever you’re upset or excited about at the moment).
  • Act inconsistently
  • Do not provide clear expectations
  • Do not celebrate your employee’s successes
  • Focus on weaknesses instead of strengths
  • Fire people before coaching or helping them
  • Act more like a drill sergeant than a coach
  • Don’t realize your job is to help your employees be successful

Bad bosses often prefer the “tell and yell” method of managing. Instead of helping their employees find ways to be successful, they start by telling them what to do. When the employee fails to meet expectations (even though they might have no idea what the expectations are) the boss moves to step two, which is yelling.

I know, this is the 21st Century. We’re all supposed to be enlightened to better ways of working with people. But I am amazed at how often this happens. You might even see it in your business.

The bad news:

Being a bad boss can cost you a lot of money.

What people don’t often consider is the consequences of being an underperforming boss.They can be huge. But to save time and space, I’ll focus on just a few of the top problems bad bosses create for their companies.

  • Lower revenue and profits
  • Higher employee turnover
  • Poor quality service to your customers
  • Increased chance of theft and fraud
  • Wasted time
  • Increased stress for you

The good news is, it’s not that hard to improve. It does take time and effort, but it’s not complicated and anyone can be a better boss.

The first, and most important thing is to put the right people in the right jobs. Hire people for their natural talents and motivations. You can train to policies, procedures and other technical and administrative needs. You can’t train friendly or motivation or honesty.

Know what each role in your company needs for it to contribute to the success of your company. Understand what personality traits needs to be strongest in that role.

Then hire to those traits. If you’re not good at this, get help. There are plenty of part-time HR people and consultants who are good at this. Also, use a decent profiling tool.  It can provide valuable insight that an interview or resume can’t.

Here are a few more tips on how you can be a great boss:

  • Let your employees know what you expect of them
  • Help them understand how their success benefits the entire company
  • Do everything you can to help them be successful
  • Treat everyone well all the time
  • Be patient
  • Build trust with them by showing you trust them
  • Celebrate their successes and failures
  • Stay positive
  • Remember, to your customers, your employees are the business

I attended a seminar a few years ago where the seminar leader nailed what it means to be a great boss. He said let your employees know when they succeed, it’s their win. When they fail, let them know it’s on you. Give them permission to learn the best ways to be successful and let them fail as part of that process.

Do everything you can to let your employees know “you’ve got their backs”. Take care of them and they’ll take care of your business.