Pokémon Go is all the rage and everywhere, game-loving consumers are immersed in their smartphones, battling it out with mythical virtual reality creatures. If you’re not familiar with the game of Pokémon Go, you’re probably wondering what all the excitement is about. Well, it’s a neat experience but it’s total fantasy, though the game relies on modern technology, such as GPS. Guided by directions, game players attempt to hunt down, trap, and train creatures. However, it’s actually instructive when it’s applied to business practices.
Is a Pokémon Go Battle Brewing in Your Business?
You might wonder just how such a seemingly silly game is relatable to running a business but you might be unwittingly playing the same type of games in your organization. Giving unrealistic requests to team members, not providing clear direction, and creating an environment of confusion and chaos is harmful to any business. After all, there’s nothing more important than your employees because their hard work is for your business’ benefit which ultimately benefits you.
You’ve had your share of lousy bosses, and you swore that if you were ever in charge, you’d do things differently. Now that day has come — you’re the boss. And your good intentions? They’re buried under a pile of meetings, emails, phone calls, griping clients, and decisions that need to be made yesterday. You don’t have the time or the energy to worry about being a good boss — not when the fate of your small business and the jobs of all your employees are hanging in the balance. You’ve got more important things to do. And so do those lazy, bellyaching employees you’re always threatening to fire. —All Business.com
The problem with many bad bosses is the fact they are completely unaware of their own behavior. It’s always someone else’s fault and only they know how to do it right. It’s a never-ending battle and one that is unwinnable. If you are curious about how your employees perceive and receive your personality and way of doing business, there are plenty of ways to pick up on the signals.
Signs You’re a Bad Boss
It’s not easy to be a good leader and even more difficult to know and accept when you’re in the wrong. Of course, there are a number of attributes which make a person a good boss but there are equally as many which make a person a really bad boss. If you’ve experienced a bad boss situation before, chances are excellent you swore if you ever ran a business, you would do things differently. Here are some of the most common signs you’re a bad boss:
- Not putting your trust in employees. There’s little more destructive than not putting your trust in employees. It sends a clear and demeaning signal you don’t believe in their abilities and makes them wonder why you hired anyone other than yourself. Micromanaging, always looking for wrongdoing, and like behaviors undermine trust, creating serious problems.
- Your business has stopped growing. If your business has become stagnant and sales have slowed for months, look in the mirror. John Maxwell writes in his Leadership books this principle called “The Law of the Lid”. Here it is; “leadership ability is the lid that determines a person’s level of effectiveness”. So, if your business seems to be hitting its limits or “lid”, it is a sign that you as the leader may have hit your limits or “leadership ability”. The way to remove the lid is through personal leadership development which can be done through reading and education, consulting and coaching and workshops, etc. If you want your sales and your business to grow again, you need to grow as a leader. Stop learning and you stop growing and so will your business because it is people (your employees) that you are leading to improve and grow your business.
- Being unwilling to respect boundaries. Texting, emailing, calling, and messaging employees on their personal time isn’t only annoying to them, it’s also a potential civil law liability. While there are certainly ways to push your team members to do their best, constantly contacting your employees off the clock isn’t one of them.
- Talking at and not to team members. Communication is key to success in any business and when it’s compromised by how it’s delivered, it creates more barriers than it knocks down. Barking orders isn’t good management, even if you reward your employees for their work. Having a conversation is far more beneficial and fosters a spirit of teamwork.
- Withholding congratulations. The power of saying “thank you” is underappreciated because it seems so trivial. It’s not and never will be meaningless. A sincere congratulations is an acknowledgment of someone’s skills and dedication. Appreciation is always a welcome trait in a boss.
- Taking credit for the work of others. There’s no reason to take credit for the work of another other than to explicitly deceive someone else. It’s petty and sends a strong signal you’ll do just about anything to bolster your sense of self-importance.
Have you experienced a bad boss situation? What steps have you taken to ensure you’re a good employer? What are the qualities you look for in team members? Please let us know by leaving a comment and joining the discussion!