Ten Things Great Bosses Know...
1. The Most Important Thing Bosses Do Is Help OTHERS Succeed:
This sounds simple, but bosses got promoted because of their personal achievements. Now, they have to shift the focus from themselves to the growth of those who report to them. In other words, it's not about YOU, boss. It's about the troops. If they do well, you should, too.
2. Managers Cannot Treat Everyone The Same:
Great bosses learn how to customize their approach to each person. Yes, they hold true to core values, but don't assume that they have to act in identical ways with each staffer. They manage people as the complex individuals they are. And that's a real skill.
3. IQ Gets Bosses Only So Far; EQ Takes Them to The Next Level:
I'm talking about emotional intelligence: the ability to be self-aware, self-managing, socially aware and adept at managing relationships. This means knowing how to read the emotions of others as well as our own, to know how to power up or power down in synch with a situation, to build trust through expertise, integrity and empathy.
4. People Fall In Love With Ideas & Solutions Of Their Own Creation:
It's faster and easier to tell people what to do; but when people come up with their own ideas, they are much more invested in them. Anyone who's ever assigned stories knows this one. Journalists love the project they come up with more than the one that's given them. When we put our personal stamp on something, we care more about it. This applies in work assignments, negotiation and conflict resolution.
5. Coaching Is A Critical Skill:
Bosses who "fix" the work of others don't help them grow. Fixing may be faster, but has short-term impact. Coaching takes more time but the results last. Fixing is about the product, coaching is about the person. With good coaching, the person and the product improve.
6. Staffers Must See You, Not Your Evil Twin:
What's the difference between visionary and delusional, a roll-up-my-sleeves helper and a micromanager, or between confidence and arrogance? It's often in the the way the leader communicates and the staff perceives her. Leaders can't assume their employees can read their minds. It's hard work to make your intentions clear.
7. Conflict Doesn't Get Better If It Is Ignored:
The best bosses build cultures where conflict may be inevitable among smart, creative people, but it is handled extremely well. Differences are aired, values are clear, people are held accountable, and bullies don't win.
8. Intrinsic Motivation Is The Most Powerful:
The best work gets done when people motivate themselves. That's intrinsic motivation: Internal engines like competence, choice, meaningfulness and progress. Or the joy of working with a team, or achieving something solo. Great bosses know what drives each person they lead.
9. Managing Change Is A Constant Responsibility:
Change can make people very uncomfortable, but leaders must move people in new directions, toward new opportunities. Today's newsrooms are undergoing massive changes of culture, workflow, skill sets, formats and technology. Great leaders build bridges to the future.
10. Leaders Inspire Others:
There's meaning, honor and dignity in every form of honest work. Don't fear that you will look corny by sharing a vision, a passion, or a dream. The best bosses make us feel better about ourselves, our work and our goals. Dare to inspire.