Recognising that there are problems with the culture of your business is the first step in improving it. It takes a good leader to not only identify areas that need attention, but to then seek out practical ways of addressing issues and preventing them from reoccurring.

Why is it important to define your company values?

A toxic workplace can be more than just the behaviours of a few, it can also be the result of an underlying foundation of unclear company values and beliefs. As the leader of an effective team, it’s important to provide your workers with a clear and easily understood idea of where your business is going, how you plan to get there, and the role you want your team to play in achieving those goals. By providing your workers with definitive guidelines surrounding your expectations of them, and how they align with the values of your business, you will have a team that is collectively working towards the same outcomes, resulting in improved teamwork and a more harmonious workplace.

What are the benefits of providing transparent leadership?

Miscommunication and misguidance can be extremely detrimental in the workplace, and can lead to all sorts of negative feelings amongst workers such as distrust, apprehension and scepticism. Good leaders help to stamp these out by providing their workers with transparency surrounding the business, their expectations of each employee, and what is acceptable and unacceptable behaviour in the workplace. Good leaders also strive to involve their team in the development and implementation of processes which help to make the business run more efficiently. After all, it’s the workers who undertake the bulk of operational tasks each day providing them with invaluable knowledge that can be harnessed to improve productivity.

Why do I need to tell my workers about changes?

It’s vital that any changes within the business are communicated to your employees with openness and transparency, and prior to them taking place. It’s unfortunately not uncommon for changes to be made in an organisation without any real communication to the team, leading to frustration and resentment towards management. Your team will absolutely appreciate being informed of changes to the business, why they’re happening, and how they’ll be impacted. And if you want to go from a good leader to a great one, encourage feedback surrounding the changes and be willing to make adjustments where needed. Your workers have a wealth of knowledge about the organisation and will welcome the opportunity to have a say in how it operates. It’s human nature to feel more valued and appreciated when you’re included and your employees are no different. Valued and appreciated workers are happier, and happier workers are more cooperative, collaborative and productive.

How can I empower my team to do their best each day?

Keep communication open by encouraging an open-door policy. As busy as running a business can be, a good leader will always make time to connect with their workers. Your employees will have worries and concerns that arise from time to time and it is important that you are there to listen. In addition, if your workers feel that they can trust you, they are more likely to report any incidents or issues without fear, leading to a more honest relationship between employee and employer. Mistakes will happen but having a solid foundation of trust will ensure that any issues are addressed promptly to minimise impact.

Recognising and rewarding your employees for their efforts will go a long way to building a solid foundation from which your workers are able to flourish, and perform at their very best. Your team will perform better if they feel as though the work that they do is firstly recognised, and secondly appreciated. As a good leader, showing your gratitude to workers who perform well will incite future good performance, and will encourage others in your team that hard work pays off. It can be the act of shouting your team coffees or as simple as shooting off a quick email to say thank you for completing a particular task. Remember to recognise the effort that your team puts in and give credit where credit is due.

Trust your workers to do their job because after all, you did hire them, right? Micromanaging your team is a sure-fire way to build up distrust and resentment. Leaders of the most productive and dynamic teams provide guidance to their workers while allowing them to fulfil the requirements of the job on their own. It takes a lot to take a step back, especially as a business owner, but by encouraging autonomy in your team, your employees will take that opportunity to show you just how capable they are. It puts the onus on your workers, and provides them with a level of responsibility and ownership that helps to increase their belief in themselves.

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