There are so many articles out there talking about what you should do to be a better leader, motivate your team and get them to be more productive. I have also written some posts and articles on similar topics as well.
However, today I would like to take this from a slightly different perspective.
If you are a leader, perhaps you would like to pause and reflect on yourself and see if you are guilty of doing the following:
1. Send your team scurrying in all directions
As a leader, do you make hasty decisions? Do you have a habit of making changes to important events at the last minute? Do you come up with adhoc new ideas and expect your team members to drop what they are doing and pursue your new ideas? Do you expect your staff to be at your beck-and-call?
If you answered YES to any of the above questions, then congratulations! Your team is now running around like a headless chicken.
When your directions aren’t clear, and your team purpose is vague, you will end up creating more fires than your team can put out. This ultimately leads to work stress, fatigue, demotivation and low productivity.
2. Hold meetings after meetings everyday with constantly changing agendas
Do you call for meetings whenever you want? Do you schedule too many meetings per week? Do you call for meetings and you don’t turn up? Do you lose track of what you have asked your team to do? Do you keep changing your objectives and agenda?
If you answered YES to any of the above questions, then congratulations! Your team has just qualified for the next season of the Walking Dead.
When your team is bogged down by meetings, they will have less time to do what they are supposed to do.
Meeting is not work; and work is not meeting all day long.
Meetings should serve a specific purpose. And if that purpose is not clear, then the meeting is not worth calling.
3. Threaten to take away your staff’s bonuses if they don’t do what you want
Do you threaten to reduce your staff bonuses if they don’t do what you ask them to do? Do you threaten to cut their salaries if they don’t do what you asked? Do you threaten them with termination if they don’t do what you expect? Do you openly show your staff you are not happy by insulting them or passing sarcastic remarks?
If you answered YES to any of the above questions, then congratulations! You have successfully qualified to be featured in the next season of National Geographic’s I Wouldn’t Go In There!
What you will end up with is a team that reports only good news to you. No one on your team will stick their necks out to tell you what is going wrong. This is self-deception at its best.
Do the above 3 points sound too incredulous to you?
Well, you might wish to know all the above are based on actual events that were related to me by someone I know. Unfortunately these things still happen in our corporate workplaces today.
So as a leader, are you unknowingly sending your team to the bottom of the heap?
What can you do to be a better leader or manager?