Leadership

3 Keys to Being a Good Boss – It’s About Presence, Praise & Promise

best-boss

Today’s post is inspired by this one on small gestures made by good bosses, especially those at the most senior level.

It’s also inspired by a sneak-peek I got at the results of our latest Workforce Mood Tracker survey (report to be released soon, stay tuned), which showed employees would rather have a better boss than more money in their paycheck.

That caused me to think about the characteristics of a better boss. While there are many, these three seem to rise to the top continually:

  1. Presence – You not only “manage by walking around,” you show up to meetings on time to signal that you value the work your employees are doing. When you’re meeting with an employee, you shut off or totally ignore your email, IM, texts and any other interruptions to give your full attention to the employee. If employees need your support to push a key decision forward, you lend your visible presence and direct support.
  2. Praise – You make it a point to give your employees the frequent, timely and specific feedback they need to stay on track and move their projects forward appropriately. You recognize and appreciate them and their efforts that are especially in line with the company’s core values and strategic objectives. Because you are diligent about “catching employees doing something good,” you also help employees receive constructive feedback more readily as they know the feedback is intended to help them advance.
  3. Promise – You help your employees see the future they have with the organization and in their career. You don’t make undue or unwarranted promises of course, but you are committed to helping your team members grow and develop – and they know it. You seek out training and development opportunities for them and encourage them to go. You give them realistic “stretch” goals to help them develop skills.

These three skills are foundational to earning the “good boss” title and all the perks that come with it (committed employees who happily go the extra distance). But there are many more.

What other signs of a good boss are important to you or do you strive to demonstrate?

You can find more from Derek Irvine on his Recognize This! blog.

The VP of Client Strategy and Consulting at Globoforce (www.globoforce.com), Derek Irvine is one of the world’s foremost experts on employee recognition and engagement, helping business leaders set a higher vision and ambition for their organizations. As a renowned speaker and co-author of Winning with a Culture of Recognition, he teaches companies how to use recognition to proactively manage company culture. Contact him at irvine@globoforce.com.
  • http://twitter.com/sparkhire Spark Hire

    All very important characteristics of a good boss! Another way bosses can regularly demonstrate their commitment to employee success is by holding regular existing employee interviews. This will help bosses to determine what’s working and what isn’t in their office environment and management style. Or, consider sending around an anonymous survey for workers to be candid with their thoughts. Either way, employees will appreciate your commitment to using their feedback to foster improvement in your workplace.

  • http://twitter.com/worksimple WorkSimple

    Absolutely agree with these three points, Derek. The combination of them not only ensures you’re a good boss, but also that your employees are happy. And happy employees mean a more productive workforce. These tips really are a win-win!

  • Brian Adam

    Derek – great tips.  

  • Sanjay Rakecha

    if every Boss follow this , problem come down below 90 %

  • http://gettwofold.com Alison McMahon

    I very much agree with these three items. Managers who aren’t available and don’t invest in their employees by giving them feedback will quickly lose credibility.