Nearly seventy percent of American employees have admitted that they are either “not engaged” or “actively disengaged” in the workplace. That’s a lot of people who aren’t very interested in their job!
Are you worried about your employee engagement rates?
If you feel your employees are not as engaged as they ought to be, it’s easy to point the finger at them. In reality, though, a certain amount of responsibility rests with you as a leader.
If you don’t know how to manage your employees well, you’re going to have a hard time keeping them motivated and engaged.
Read on to learn some great people management and engagement skills that will make you a better leader.
The Importance of Good Management
Before getting into the specific people management skills every business leader needs to work on developing, let’s go over the importance of good management.
Why do you need to work on your management and engagement skills? Why can’t your employees just adapt to your management style?
There are a lot of reasons why good management and leadership matters. The following are some of the greatest benefits of becoming a better leader:
- Increased employee success
- Increased business success
- More motivation to do well among employees
- Increased confidence among employees
- Better employee retention rates
- Fewer new employee acquisition costs
- Attract better, more qualified employees
- Increased morale and a better work environment
Clearly, there’s a lot to be gained when you make an effort to improve your management style. If you want your business to be more profitable and your employees to be more successful, you need to make sure you’re an effective leader.
Seven People Management Skills Every Leader Needs
Clearly, people management is important. Every leader needs to develop the following people management skills if they want to learn to lead their employees properly.
A good leader must be patient. If you’re constantly losing your temper or getting upset with your employees when they’re not understanding something, you’re going to end up alienating them and causing them to end up even more disengaged.
Some people are naturally more patient than others. You can work to become more patient, though.
The next time you feel that you’re going to lose it, stop, take a deep breath, and count backwards from ten. This will help you stay calm and gather your thoughts before you speak.
2. Good Communication
A good leader also needs to be a good communicator.
If you feel like your employees are always messing up or doing things incorrectly, take a step back and ask yourself whether the problem isn’t their incompetence, but your inability to communicate what you need effectively.
If people aren’t getting something when you explain something a certain way, consider phrasing it differently.
Make sure you’re comfortable communicating in various ways — via email, via text message, verbally, etc. Before you speak, be sure to think about the possible ways your message could be misinterpreted and revise accordingly.
In order to be a good leader, you need to be able to roll with the punches and be flexible.
If something doesn’t go the way you want it to the first time around, be willing to pivot and try something else.
Sometimes, your first plan doesn’t work out, and that’s okay. A good leader always has a Plan B — and a Plan C and a Plan D — ready to go.
4. Sincere Interest
If you want to be a good leader, you need to show a sincere interest in your business and your employees.
Are you disinterested in the success of the company or the success fo your employees as individuals? If so, you’re going to have a hard time keeping your employees engaged and being an effective leader.
Make sure you’re asking questions and getting to know your employees on a more personal level. Maybe you’re lacking interest because you haven’t tried to really know your employees.
5. Listening Ability
Remember that communication isn’t just about what you say. You also need to think about the way you’re listening to your employees. In fact, your listening ability matters even more than what you say.
As a leader, you need to work on being an active listener.
Listen to what your employees say without interrupting. Ask questions to clarify what they’re saying and ensure you’re understanding the intent behind their words.
You’ll be amazed at what you’ll get out of the conversation when you start listening more actively!
Honesty is a crucial trait that every good leader must possess. You need to be able to be honest even when it’s not convenient or doesn’t feel good.
Your employees will respect you more if they see that you are honest at all times, even when it’s not in your best interest.
Remember, there’s a difference between being honest and being tactless. You can get your point across without being rude or putting others down.
7. Problem-Solving Ability
Finally, you need to develop your problem-solving abilities if you want to be a good leader. Your employees will be happier and more productive if they know that you are on their side and can help them solve their problems as they arise.
A big part of being a good problem solver is being able to be proactive. You need to be able to recognize problems before they arise and take steps to fix them quickly.
If you’re not confident in your problem-solving abilities, talk to a mentor or higher up in the company to see if they can help you get better. There’s nothing wrong with asking for help!
Looking for More Management Tips?
Learning to manage employees isn’t easy. It’s absolutely worth it, though.
If you can’t manage your employees well, you’re going to have a hard time running a profitable, successful business.
Once you start working on developing these people management skills, you’ll be well on your way to becoming an effective leader that your employees look up to.
Are you interested in learning more about becoming a great leader?
If so, we’ve got lots of other resources that can help. This article is a great one to read first.