Are You A Bad Manager? How To Overcome Bad Boss Syndrome
They say people don’t quit jobs; they quit managers. Unfortunately, since most employees won’t dare to criticize their manager, you might not find out you’re the reason an employee is leaving until it’s too late—if ever. However, if your team members think you aren’t doing a good job, it’s just a matter of time before your own supervisor hears about it… and that’s one conversation you don’t want to have.
How to tell if you’re a bad manager
You can avoid that conversation by assessing how your employees interact with you. When you call a meeting, do your people participate in the discussion, or is everyone reluctant to speak? Do your team members routinely reach out to you for feedback? Does anyone ever express an opinion that opposes yours, or are they all too afraid? Look out for signs that your team members feel intimidated around you. On the other hand, your team members could also feel comfortable around you—so comfortable, in fact, that they simply go their own route without paying any attention to you.
How to overcome bad boss syndrome
Once you’ve determined why you’re a bad manager, it’s time to work on your managerial skills and enhance your performance. It all starts by understanding what your role isn’t and what it is: you’re not a nitpicker looking to find fault with everything, but you’re also not everyone’s best friend. What you are is a leader who makes decisions based on input from top management and your team, supports your people, and isn’t afraid to make tough calls when necessary.
Next, it’s time to truly become that person. As Raphael Crawford-Marks points out in his Entrepreneur article “6 Alternatives to Being a Bad Boss,” you have to foster autonomy. This will show your people you trust them and gives them more room to come up with creative solutions. You should also ask your employees for feedback. It might be best to arrange an anonymous way for them to do this, since most employees won’t be comfortable providing constructive criticism. Finally, you must lead by example. For instance, if you want your team to follow up on commitments, you have to make sure you’re making good on your promises, too.
Discovering you’re a bad manager can be a shock. However, with some perseverance and hard work, you can improve your managerial skills and become a respected boss everyone wants to work with.