So many bosses of all levels of management seem to think that holding a position of power entitles them to act like a lower colonic sphincter and, that by doing so, they will get better results from their subordinates. However, are you more likely to go the extra mile for someone you respect or someone you hate? Ensure work is a pleasure ‘though, and you will see a marked difference in productivity and lowering of absenteeism rates.
Whilst Machiavelli concluded it was, in general, better for a prince to be feared rather than loved, he also extolled the results to be gained by being held close to the heart of his subjects. That’s not to say you should be a pushover, you shouldn’t; people need and want to someone to guide and motivate them. They want you to be a leader, just not Genghis Khan*.
There is a time and a place for blind obedience and barked orders but those are the times when people understand that there is an imminent threat of some sort and there is no time for debate. For the rest of the time, in my experience, people work far harder, give better results and take less time off, when they have someone they enjoy working for.
When was the last time you made a cup of tea/ coffee for your team; brought them buns, took a genuine interest in their life/ problems? Have you ever rewarded someone with a ‘Hollwood lunch break/ lie in/ finish’ (extra time off at lunch for a really leisurely lunch/ a late start on a Monday morning/ early finish on a Friday)? Knowing that a colleague has a childs or partners birthday coming up and offering some extra time off before it is asked for can be a massive tick in the goodwill box the next time you need some flexibility in return; chances are, if you get it right; they will see the need and offer their time before you even ask for it.
It’s not easy being a good boss and we all make mistakes but, aiming to be a leader who is liked, is a good start. Good luck.
There are numerous books about management skills and I don’t intend to write another one in this blog however, I’ve read some great ones and this is one of my personal favourites
*I’ve used Genghis Khan as he is always portrayed as a terrible and brutal leader. However, the truth is somewhat different. In the context of his time, he was no worse than many other leaders of the day. In fact, unlike teh Romans for example, he placed a high value and tolerance on other cultures, encouraging assimilation with the people of the kingdoms he conquered; rather than annihilation.
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About Chris Wood: Chris is an estate agent with over 25 years of property experience. His business, PDQ Estates Ltd is based in Penzance and Helston, West Cornwall. He has worked with all sizes and types of businesses from single office independents to the management team and board of RBS and Tesco. A former President Elect of the NAEA and board member of NFoPP until he resigned in 2009, Chris has always championed the highest professional standards for estate agents in the UK. No stranger to the media, he has appeared on various programs including BBC, News 24, ITV, independent and BBC radio and is a regular contributor to trade journals, local and national Newspapers. Chris is on Klout LinkedIn Ecademy Facebook and Twitter Married to Amanda, he lives in Penzance with their children who are slowly flying the nest, his two dogs and his elderly Uncle. In his spare time; Chris likes to keep fit and is a long-standing member of the Territorial Army. In 2010 he mobilised for a tour of duty in Afghanistan with 1 Rifles as part of 3 Commando Brigade.