Communicate Your Goals Clearly

How well do you communicate with your team? It’s a simple question with a complex answer. Often, when your vision for a task isn’t completed to your standards, it has more to do with communication than some deficiency on your team’s part. So, before you delegate a responsibility to your team, take a moment to make sure you’re ready to communicate your vision clearly. Write it down. Set it aside for a little while. Then read it over. Would it make sense to you if it wasn’t your idea?

Clear communication of vision is essential to a project’s success. Your team will thank you for it.

Keep Asking Questions

In a management position, it’s not uncommon to answer more questions than you ask. After all, when you direct your team, you might sometimes give order after order, especially with a new initiative. Even with customers, much of your job is just answering their questions.

Make a habit of asking your team questions. Not only will this communicate your value of them, you’ll actually learn some important information. You’ll get a better bead on their strengths and shortcomings, and where they’re succeeding or getting hung up.

Award Results

Your business, like any other, is results-focused. You’re not here to wave your hands and look busy. You’re here to serve your customers and make money. Helping your team understand the importance of results will create a culture of diligence and motivation.

Make sure you and your employees are on the same page regarding results. Do you have the same idea of what that means?

Finally, recognize and celebrate the steps your team takes when working toward a goal. When they get something done, they should register it as a success, because success comes from results. Award their results and watch your own results multiply.

Think Before You Act

Like lifting weights, this discipline is simple, but not easy. When something goes wrong, especially if you’re already stressed, your brain naturally wants to react. This is great if you need to escape a burning building or escape an angry bear, but not so great when you’re making business decisions or leading your team.

If your people see you as impulsive and emotional in negative circumstances, you might start to lose their trust, and trust is key in a working relationship. Besides, approaching setbacks in a calm, reasoned manner will allow you to see them, and communicate them to your team, as opportunities for growth, rather than demoralizing or world-ending catastrophes.

Work Smarter, Not Faster

It’s always great to find an employee who works fast, error-free, but this is often the exception, rather than the rule. It’s important to reward smart, thorough work, whether it’s fast or not. Never let your employees believe that you want them to cut corners for the sake of speed.

Communicate with your team that no matter how fast they work, speed doesn’t actually help if it leads to mistakes. This applies to everything from customer interaction to paperwork to moving inventory. Double-checking orders and figures keeps your business safe just as attentiveness with a forklift keeps your yard safe.

It’s a new year. Take some steps to set some new leadership standards. Your team and your bottom line will thank you.

View more of this month's Dealer's Edge content here

Dealers Edge in | January 01, 2019