Supporting Employees

I mentioned this in the introduction when I talked about the one and only boss I had who I felt supported me (“Purpose and focus of Leadership to the Max blog”).

There is a distinct advantage to supporting those who work for you:

For the leader:
• Helps build trust, and truthfulness
• Improves communication
• Opens the door for a more productive environment, job performance discussions, and openness
• Lessons potential tension

For the employee:
• Knows that the boss cares about them
• Improves communication
• Relaxed environment in that the employee does not have to worry about what’s being said behind closed doors
• Can take all concerns (e.g., leader’s management style/behavior), issues, fears, conflicts, etc., to the boss without fear of reprisal
• Builds trust, and truthfulness

There are other advantages, and these are a few to consider.

So what does support look like? I think it’s pretty simple if it is understood that most of us like interaction with others, in other words being human. My experience with most managers is that there is an arrogance about them; that there is something “special” about them because they have “manager, supervisor, director, vice-president, president” in their title. A true leader understands it’s NOT about them. They are their to help, not hinder. It includes:

Asking questions employees about their work (e.g., “how is it going”, “need any help with xyz project”, needed tools)
Express interest in how they are doing,
Ask them if they have suggestions when an organizational problem arises
Greeting them when you, or they, arrive for work
Thanking them when their workday is done
A gesture of a wave, or a “good-bye” at the end of the day, with a smile, means a lot
Letting others know that you need facts when they complain about your employee(s)
Realizing that ulterior motives exist towards those who work harder, and smarter

Author: maxbinkley

Creator of Leadership to the Max My experience in the military helped set the career path for me in human resources. After the military I worked for The Dow Chemical Company and left there in 1993 to venture out on my own. I purchased a small business, then a franchise then started another business in semi-retirement.

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