Business Magazine

Is Your Leadership Style Motivating Or Demoralizing?

Posted on the 19 June 2017 by Martin Zwilling @StartupPro

angry-man-demotivatingEvery business leader realizes their primary objective is to motivate people to do what is required, yet all of us with any experience in business tend to remember most those times when we felt highly demotivated by our leaders. Since I can’t imagine any leader demoralizing their team intentionally, I’ve concluded that the challenge must be how to see your own faults and fix them.

I’m sure there are a few leaders who are convinced they have no faults, so they don’t look. For the rest, as a coach, I still struggle with definitively telling leaders what to look for in themselves, and how to change. In that context, I just finished a new book, “Communicate Like A Leader,” by Dianna Booher, who has long coached executives at some of the largest Fortune 500 companies.

I like her summary of seven habits that differentiate generally demoralizing managers from ones that are seen as highly motivating. With some of my own commentary, I see these habits characterizing leaders whose management style includes the following:

  1. Dole out bits and pieces versus the big picture. Business professionals don’t want to be treated as “kids,” by parents who parcel out only what they think their children can handle or need to know at the moment. They expect to be motivated by the “big picture,” or higher purpose of your business or group. Don’t ever talk down to your team.

  2. Focus on the “how” rather than the “why.” Only automatons need to be programmed with how to do something, without any understanding of why, and no human is motivated to be a robot. Poor leaders often neglect to offer the why, perhaps because they don’t understand it themselves, or fear they may get challenging questions or disagreement.

  3. Discourage questions as a waste of time. Great leaders actually seek insightful questions and even opposing views, as an avenue to engagement, innovation, and collaboration. The best leaders love to learn, and they know they can’t learn much while talking. Leaders must practice active listening to optimize learning and motivation.

  4. Assign projects or tasks and then disappear. A more motivational approach for leaders is to delegate projects or tasks at a reasonable pace, taking care with each to make sure the team understands the assignment, accepts responsibility, and has the resources to reach the goal. Extra time spent in the beginning will save much time later.

  5. Hire people perceived to be less capable than themselves. Ineffective leaders tend to hire “helpers” rather than “help.” Helpers take more time to manage and train, but won’t challenge your boundaries. If you hire people smarter than yourself, they will be motivated to complement your skills, and both you and your business will benefit.

  6. Communicate indirectly and assume people understand. This approach leaves staff guessing about their standards and expectations, introduces errors, and reduces motivation. People are motivated to deliver if they clearly understand what is expected, with no surprises. Informal direct discussions are more productive than formal ones.

  7. Tend to share mostly bad news or negative feedback. No one is motivated by a leader who only seems to show up when things go wrong. The best leaders communicate personally, regularly, and consistently in both good times and bad. They are quick to celebrate small wins, and give positive feedback more often than negative.

In my experience, the best assessment of where you fit in this spectrum is the amount of positive feedback you get directly from your team, and the number of people who lobby to join your team. If you are hearing more negatives than positives, or your best people are always ready to leave, it may be time to take a hard look in the mirror. Only you can really change the person you see.

Marty Zwilling


You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race 2017 – Daily Updates – Day 4 – Alan Young

    Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race 2017 Daily Updates Alan Young

    Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race 2017 - Daily Updates - Day 4 ?Ray K was my houseguest as we were not required for "security " duties. ?About 1 am we reached... Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Abichal
    OTHER SPORTS, OUTDOORS
  • Summer Festival Preview: Tanglewood

    Summer Festival Preview: Tanglewood

    Another summer under the trees offers gods, rainbows and Mahler. by Paul J. Pelkonen The Koussevitsky Concert Shed at Tanglewood, guarded by a really big... Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Superconductor
    CULTURE, THEATRE & OPERA
  • What is The Death Gate and What Happens When It Opens

    What Death Gate Happens When Opens

    A mystery artist has created a puzzle to be solved in the form of The Deathgate... and it opens on 30 June. It's counting down right now! It may not seem obviou... Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Tomatrax
    ENTERTAINMENT, MUSIC
  • Reasons Why the UK is Better Than Ohio

    Reasons Better Than Ohio

    Well, I just felt like listing a few of the things that make the UK better than Ohio. The UK is twice as big as Ohio (242,900 sq.km versus 116,096 sq. Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Ravenswingthog
    DIARIES, SELF EXPRESSION
  • A Sense Of Possession In The Industry

    One of the things that I love about music is the sense of possession you get out of it. The fact that you can have a record that is your favorite record of all... Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Indiemusicpromo
    ENTERTAINMENT, MUSIC
  • Calling All Meat Lovers: Windy City RibFest Returns to Uptown

    Calling Meat Lovers: Windy City RibFest Returns Uptown

    Windy City RibFest in Uptown will be back again this year to dazzle your taste buds with melt-in-your-mouth slabs of meat and saucy concoctions. Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Urbanmatter Chicago
    TRAVEL
  • Tinted Glasses

    Tinted Glasses

    To enhance a casual look, tinted glasses are perfect to jazz up your look. This inspired look from the 70s has traced the surface yet again to give a comeback b... Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Chayanikarabha
    FASHION, LIFESTYLE, SHOPPING

Magazines