Are You a “Horrible” Boss?

Feeling like your employees are watching your every move? Afraid that your employees are plotting your demise?

Of course they’re not, but they may have seen the summer blockbuster, “Horrible Bosses.”

In the film, three of the world’s worst bosses are taken down by their beleaguered employees. And while the scenario is one for the movie theater only, it can’t hurt to take a look at your own management style to determine if you are, in fact, “horrible.”

Avoid sticky situations like the characters in the film and inspire your employees by following these five leadership and management tips:

  1. Aim for personal growth.
    That’s yours, not theirs. Are you up-to-date on the latest technology and trends? Could you use some advanced training (in management or otherwise)? Look for opportunities to improve yourself and your work, and share your experiences with your employees. When your employees see that you are trying to be “better,” they might just be inspired to instigate their own personal and professional growth.
  2. Be like Michael Scott.
    The famous boss from TV’s “The Office” might not be who you aim to emulate on a day-to-day basis, but there is one area where Michael Scott excelled–he was rarely holed up in his office. More frequently, he was out on the floor, among his team, inspiring them to succeed. In this way, you can definitely be like Michael Scott. Don’t hide in your office all day–take an opportunity to work alongside your team and show them that you are more than a figurehead, you’re a leader.
  3. Encourage a healthy work/life balance.
    Work, work, work. Drive productivity. Increase profits. Yes, your job can seem like a one-note tune from time to time, can’t it? As the boss, it’s your job to help ensure your employees have ample opportunity to foster a healthy work/life balance. It’s not only good for your reputation, it will likely lead to the productivity and profit goals you are seeking.
  4. Don’t just manage — lead.
    Many bosses have notions of grandeur, being the beloved leader of a successful team. But the day-to-day reality ends up being mired in a litany of small management details, personnel issues, and other minutiae. It can be pretty hard to focus on the big picture, and leading your team to victory. Keep your eye on the systems and structure within your organization, but don’t forget about the people who make it all happen. Keep your eye on the short-term goals you’re trying to reach, with an eye on the big picture down the line.
  5. Think about the team.
    Often, the big picture gets swallowed up by the actions or goals of the individuals. Overcome this trap by setting aside some regular time (daily, weekly, even monthly, if that’s all you can do) to dedicate to team activities, “big picture” team meetings that help ensure your entire team is aware of the direction and goals of your company, and other team-building activities. You’ll help focus your team on the company’s goals, and help them feel like an integral part of the big picture, and not just another cog in the wheel.

It can be a little bit tough being the “boss,” but by keeping your eye on the big picture, and choosing to work with “people” instead of “employees,” you can help drive productivity, increase profits, and perhaps most importantly…avoid being thought of as a “horrible” boss!