We All Have Bad Days; Don’t Take Yours Out on Your Employees

Businessman Sitting in a Wheelchair Shaking Hands with a Businessman StandingNo manager is perfect. Two articles I read recently brought that truism home to me, and made me think about the ways in which I could improve my managerial skills.

The first article I read was from Fast Company, Are You A “Ghost Boss”? 4 Bad Boss Bloopers–And How To Fix Them, by Laura Vanderkam. Ms. Vanderkam tells managers not to blame others, but to focus on fixing the problem. And she says to accept responsibility when the error is yours. Keep your temper, don’t take your frustrations out on your employees. Don’t avoid problems; figure out how to deal with them head-on, and get help if you need it.

The second article I read was Showing That You Care, by Mary Jo Asmus of Aspire Collaborative Services. None of us can be “on” every day. The challenge for managers is not to let our bad moods or bad days impact how we treat employees. As Ms. Asmus says,

“You know the saying: ‘They don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care’.”

No matter what your day has been like, you need to continue to show your staff that you care. Our hours are often filled with minutiae and with managing up. Don’t forget that a critical part of your job is managing down . . . by showing that you care. Ms. Asmus advocates treating employees as individuals, stretching them, and showing your gratitude.

Both Ms. Vanderkam and Ms. Asmus tell us things we should have learned in kindergarten, at the same time we learned the Golden Rule.

But I confess that I show my frustration to employees, even when they need to see me coping. I sometimes hide in my office, avoiding a conflict I know is brewing. I don’t reach out to employees to show them how important they are to me.

Laura Vanderkam reminds us that people join companies, but they leave managers.

What are you doing to be sure you aren’t the manager your strongest employees leave?



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Filed under Employee Engagement, Leadership, Management, Workplace

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