Leaders walk the tight rope between bettering the business and meeting associates needs.
If you’ve ever been promoted from a lower-level position to a leadership position, there’s a chance you’ve experienced a dramatic shift in perspective. In the former role, you almost certainly advocated on your own needs as well as perhaps those of your peers. On an executive level, it’s your task to advocate for all those you lead, along with the company’s fiscal health, more broadly.
As the needs of associates and that of the business often do align, periodically it’s a hardcore negotiation between dueling forces. A company is as effective as its people, so morale is important, as are fair wages, benefits and chance for growth. Simultaneously, companies can’t always justify meeting every expectation folks have. Actually, leaders must sometimes make tough choices that’ll be unpopular among those they represent.
Managing People May be the Hardest Part of a Leader’s Job
Being truly a good leader means balancing both of these interests in a manner that best serves all parties. Sometimes this means making hard choices; other times this means pushing back against the powers-that-be to attain the fairest possible outcome. Here are some things to bear in mind when it’s your turn to shift your perspective and balance these critical priorities.
There are reasons certain people get chosen to lead. One is the opportunity to consider the big picture and make smart, strategic decisions that help your company achieve its goals.
It might be difficult to see this big picture when you’re not in charge of anyone but yourself; also to be fair, it’s not your task to. And as the famous Spider Man quote goes, “with great power comes great responsibility.” In addition, it includes knowledge — all of the pieces which together form this big picture. Sometimes you don’t even have to put them together yourself!
Every decision a leader makes must hook up to this big picture, and which includes to decisions you know will be favorable among your associates, like more vacation days or catered lunches. It doesn’t really matter to your associates whether you have the cover catered lunches, and just why should it? And for you personally, it does matter, and you will need to match it into your company expenses (i.e. the picture as a whole) if it’s a really priority.
Is Your Workplace Culture Where IT REQUIRES to Be?
Like I mentioned, oftentimes what’s in the very best interest of the talent is what’s in the company’s best interest too, even if it’s not immediately obvious. There are always a dozen or even more reasons to keep your associates happy and fulfilled, chief included in this retention, loyalty and productivity.
The question is, exactly what will make associates happy and fulfilled? I really believe you have to focus on the fundamentals and work the right path up. Respect and recognition don’t cost a dime, yet many workers in the united states feel actively disrespected, a sense that loses money by causing disengagement. Respect your team, pay attention to them, and recognize them, and you may at least be halfway there.
Things such as pay and benefits will get more difficult, although if it’s a concern over the board, your base salary and increase requirements might need a reboot, a significant topic of discussion for higher-ups. Generally, it’s smart to let associates know very well what to expect and just why, and how they are able to earn much more. If there’s grounds the business can’t give increases, tell them.
Some may say great leaders never compromise, however in my opinion, the contrary holds true. Collect as much feedback since you can before making assumptions, and act onto it — up to you’re in a position to, that’s, with the knowing that on some points compromise will be necessary.
Compromise will come in lots of shapes and forms. In the event that you work for a little startup that has, so far, been unable to provide a 401K, you may start providing the choice even when you can’t match it yet like associates would like. Rather than offering catered lunches regularly, offer them monthly as a motivation for reaching important goals. On a person-to-person basis, in the event that you can’t give a person just what they are requesting, make an effort to meet them halfway and offer a path toward their goal.
Not Your Parents’ Career Development
Compromise can be a chance to calibrate expectations by explaining the picture as a whole. In this manner everyone in your company understands what’s realistic and just why, and the way the company is taking their needs into consideration when making decisions with the person.
The normal thread throughout these former bits of advice is transparency. If there’s a gap between expectations and reality, that’s probably because you haven’t been transparent enough. Transparency can help align your company, improve associate relationships and engagement, and open doors to new solutions.
It will make those tough conversations a bit simpler to explain the whys, whens and hows of the decisions you make. For example, if your company makes a financial decision such as a sale or acquisition, or chooses to employ an external candidate for an executive position, it is advisable to be transparent about your reasoning and clearly articulate the type of impact associates will experience continue. Transparency about financial reviews can be a terrific way to let associates understand how the business does and the show what role they play in the picture as a whole.
As a leader, it’s rather a blessing and a burden to bear responsibility to your team, your shareholders as well as your customers all at one time. In the event that you can’t please everyone, communicating the picture as a whole, finding common ground, compromising and offering transparency into decision-making can help you find the appropriate balance. That balance may be the key to optimizing both wellness of your co