Not everyone in business is a natural boss. You might not have thought you’d end up being the one in charge when you started your side hustle which then grow exponentially and now you have employees working for you. Perhaps you worked your way up the ladder and now you’re the one that heads up the organisation and everyone looks to, turns to. However you got to this position, if you’re the boss, being the best possible one is something you must do. To do this, there are many things you have to do.
Firstly, this probably resonates with you if you started the business by yourself, is that you don’t have to be an expert in everything. You may have tried when you didn’t have employees, but you are good to pick out your weaknesses and pass on those tasks to those more suited to dealing with them. Delegation is key. Not only that but it shows you have trust in your workforce. This lets you have to time to think like a boss.
This thinking time lets you see the business in a different way, a bigger way where you have less distractions. Of course, don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty, handling critical business when you need to, but you have employees who will feel empowered if they tackle tasks too. Open communication will ensure they ask for help when they need it and similarly, if you need help, don’t be afraid to ask for input, even though you’re the boss. An effective boss uses everyone’s strengths to the fullest for the benefit of the business.
When we speak about communication, it’s important for bosses to be approachable for all levels of employees, including outside suppliers such as a bookkeeping service, external freelancers like designers and remote workers who perhaps work flexible hours or in other countries. Being connected, interested and engaged with staff helps two way communication work better. Taking advantage of modern technologies such as video conferencing and cloud based project management systems is just as important as face to face meetings. Of course, however tech savvy your business goes, a simple email, text message or even a few words at the water cooler about how good of a job they are doing well help your staff stay motivated. Open communication means that the suggestion that perhaps in other businesses a member of staff wouldn’t stand up and say, could be the changing factor in the course of your company.
Fairless and flexibility are two other quality characteristics of a good boss. Avoiding favouritism is key whilst also treating everyone fairly. If there are successes, it’s likely to be a team effort but also give credit where credit is due to individuals. It’s hard to find a balance where everyone is happy. If anything does arise where you need to speak to someone in terms of discipline or resolving any issues, avoid making assumptions from gossip and give your employee a chance to explain their side of the story. When you’re a boss it’s next level flexibility compared to working by yourself. You need the backing of your staff so if they have an emergency, it’s usually a good thing to be supportive. Personal things can happen during office hours and life events are more important than that word document your staff member has been working on. If you’re loyal to them, they’ll likely be loyal to you and the company. Flexibility also means listening to new ideas and being willing to give them a go, resulting in respect from a workforce which feels valued.
Being a boss is hard work but the best bosses listen to their staff, have confidence and are honest. The journey of running this company won’t always be easy, there will be bumps in the road and tricky decisions to make but if you show that you’re willing to do the hard graft and lead by example from the top, your team will follow you and help you achieve your business goals.