By Louise Bauer Davoli
Whether you've been a boss for a number of years or have been recently promoted or are simply planning for the future, now is the time to make sure you have the right stuff to be a great boss, not just a good one. But where do you begin?
Failure to recognize what you, as a boss actually achieve opposed to what you think you accomplish is fundamental to being a great boss. Self-awareness can be challenging for bosses and managers, who all too often have a tendency to overstate or misread their contributions and impact on their people. It takes a strong and devoted character to recognize one's shortcomings and work to overcome the deficits. Moments of self-awareness often include a willingness to take a long hard look in the mirror, or very often listen to a close friend or spouse. If you are a boss and you do not have someone in your life with the courage to challenge your assumptions, you are missing the great boss boat.
Attributes for the Boss:
Having the courage to give up controlling habits and behaviors is essential. When it comes to attitude remember you act as a mirror for your people. Staying upbeat with a possibility perspective will help keep your staff optimistic and happy. Teaching people to do things your way takes time so you'll need to be patient with the range of learning styles and pacing. Understand that your employees are human beings with needs and feelings. Believe in your people.
Understand what is at stake. It is one thing to understand a flaw and quite another issue to recognize its importance and implications in the workplace. For example, poor communications is not just a matter of polishing how you deliver messages through words but includes setting an example or modeling the behavior for others to follow. Frequently the process of self-improvement involves stopping one behavior in favor of doing something else. For example, a manager who has a tendency to micromanage must learn to stop looking over the shoulder of his or her direct reports. The boss must learn to let go of this urge to control everything in favor of letting people figure things out for themselves. In return, you will have more time to devote time on strategic activities and the big picture. This seems like a no brainer but is quite challenging for folks and requires a sincere commitment to implement.