Having the confidence and loyalty of your team makes your job easier. No second-guessing, no arguing, no fights, and minimal turnover. What’s not to like? You might not admit it, but it’s easier to get things done when employees believe in you. I bet you wouldn’t be as stressed if you didn’t have to serve memos for poor attendance, because your team actually loves their job. If your team is already loyal to your cause, and confident in your ability as their boss, you wouldn’t be reading this article. But since you’re still here, I assume you need a bit of help getting to that point. If so, below are a few tips about how to win the confidence and loyalty of your team.
Bridging the Gap from So-So Commitment to 100% Loyalty of Your Team
Skip the Me, Me, Me Mentality
Why would John be interested in this project? Why would he devote all his time and energy into making this a success? Your answer better not be because you said so.
If you can’t explain how the task is going to benefit John’s career, you’ll have a poor chance of gaining his confidence in your leadership ability.
So think about your employees might react if you didn’t have the authority to terminate them. Chances are, you’ll probably envision one of them with a snappy comeback. Base your reply on whatever snappy remark he or she comes up with then tie it to that employee’s career goals.
Give Help to Get Help
Don’t hesitate to assist your employees, even if you know they should be capable enough to do their own job — or find answers for themselves. You’re the boss, it’s part of your job description to guide them when they need answers or clarification.
Remember, no one’s asking you to do the job. A few suggestions is often enough.
Next time a team member asks for help, or is falling behind; invite him for a quick meeting. Talk about his work and the hiccups he’s experiencing. Some questions to ask:
- What alternatives have you considered so far?
- What is preventing you from completing X task?
- Do you need more time?
Under Promise, Over-Deliver
Your employees might be grown ups, but like children, they still don’t like broken promises. Bonus cancelled this year? Yes, everyone in your team is disappointed. They need to render overtime again this month, even if you said last month was the last time? They’re disappointed, too.
Never promise anything you can’t give, and never promise something outside your control. That includes bonuses, schedules, and promotions. Even if what you’re promising has already been approved by upper-management, it’s still not wise to announce it until it’s in writing.
Embrace Uncertainty and Failure
No one likes working for a perfectionist boss. No one wants to get shouted at for their mistakes. Yes, even if it’s their fault. So let your team knows that it’s okay to make mistakes, as long as they don’t hide it from you.
A team that’s not scared of an angry boss is more productive, innovative, and happy. They’re less likely to resign, too.
Above All, Be Open
Is something amiss at the company? Don’t hide it. Discuss it with your team. What can you do? How does the situation affect all of you? When your team knows they can trust you to keep them up to date with the goings-on in the office, besides their job, you’ll be the first person they talk to. They won’t be tempted to rely on gossip.