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How to Become a Better Leader Through Your Employees

By Alex Loggins on January 15, 2019 in Blog5 Comments

How to Become a Better Leader Through Your Employees graphic

Let me start off by stating that I am by no means an expert on this subject matter, but my viewpoints have been influenced by my experiences in being managed and managing employees. Through these experiences I have honed in on six leadership fundamentals that I do my best to practice.

  1. Delegate

In order to be an effective leader you must be able to trust your team to take care of tasks. I have known and worked under many managers who carry the cross for every task, ranging from job specific tasks to the basic day-to-day operation. These managers, while extremely dedicated and devoted, end up either burning themselves out or falling behind to disastrous levels.

When you delegate tasks to your employees, you not only remove some stress from yourself but you also help improve the self worth of your employees. In order to be a better leader, you must have faith in your employees to accomplish these tasks and that faith can only come from training and follow up. Be diligent in developing your employees so you do not have to worry about the tasks you assign to them.

  1. Ask for feedback

Most of us have done things a certain way for years and never think twice about it. However, in order to improve your leadership skills, being receptive to feedback is vital to improving ourselves and improving our relationship with our teams. By asking our team for feedback we can improve our methods and the workplace atmosphere. It’s important to show everyone that their opinions matter.

  1. Avoid micromanaging

This seems like a no-brainer, but this can be a deep-rooted issue or personality trait that is extremely tough for some to break. Micromanaging, in my experience, is caused by everything from a lack of trust in one’s team to the feeling of losing control.

Most of us didn’t just fall into a management position, we had to prove ourselves and master our roles. As we progress up the ladder we lose a lot of control over those things we mastered to the person now filling that role.

Learn to trust your team and let them take hold of the steering wheel. Hold your team accountable but focus more on your priorities and trust them to focus on their own.

  1. Trust in your team

We are all human and part of being human is making mistakes. A vital part of empowering your employees is trusting them to do the right thing and resolve issues. It will go a long way, not only for the employee, but also for the end customer if a mistake can be righted then and there without having to consult management. Instill in your team your company values, expectations and goals. Telling your employees these things will help them understand the mindset they should have in rectifying these issues.

  1. Acknowledge accomplishments

Everyone wants some acknowledgment for a job well done. Acknowledging accomplishments whether through a pat on the back, providing lunch or an after hours beer helps to show your appreciation for an employee’s hard work and effort. Having someone say, “You’re doing a great job and all of your effort is truly appreciated” really does make a difference.

  1. Have fun

Most everyone has worked somewhere that they absolutely despised. Work could have been boring, the atmosphere could have been tense or depressing, there might have been fear whenever the boss was around. This is something we should work hard to prevent.

Employee retention is vital to a company’s success and in order to keep people around we need to make an effort to keep people happy. Remember to joke, talk about what you did on the weekend, brag about the size of the fish you caught and keep things light. There is no rule that says you cannot be friends with your employees. It can make certain things a bit tougher but overall the benefits greatly outweigh the negatives.

Alex Loggins photo
Alex Loggins
Alex Loggins is the Branch Manager for Ewing Atlanta.

5 Responses to How to Become a Better Leader Through Your Employees

  1. Daniel January 15, 2019 at 6:31 pm #

    Good job, Alex! I’m proud of your success and excited about the future of Ewing Atlanta.

  2. Brian Nurre January 16, 2019 at 9:02 am #

    Great article! I especially liked 4 & 6.

  3. FRANK GABRY February 11, 2019 at 11:55 am #

    The most important which you failed touch on is no 1. SAFETY! no matter who or what position your in. Safety meeting once a month where you ask some one to pick a topic. Like mowers – what can go wrong -what to do when something goes wrong, then role play with employees as actors in a situation & there are many situations. Several which can become a huge risk (risk management). We for example are certified Landscape Contractors & as owner, have monthly meetings where I ask someone to start a topic related to business at hand. I prep them ahead of time usually a few days before meeting. I don’t let anyone speak out of turn, yet allow for ‘fun’ remarks once in a while. Yes I’m not that hard core! Other day discussed shovels the different types we use, how to use them properly, how to care for them, & injuries that can happen like our all steel shovels will take off a toe when sharp & someone has little concentration on whats they are doing. You’d be surprised how much people can voluntary give out information that even I wasn’t aware off after 40 yrs in the business we can learn form anyone, no one knows everything although I am very close after all I’ve been instructor of Entomology – Horticultural care both chemical & natural- Landscape Design (Urban Planner grad) Hardscape- Proper Irrigation practice (design systems for plants not the other way around like most irrigation contractors do. Back to point the topic of being a good leader is always encourage creativity just don’t allow wasted time. I offer profit sharing even though it’s nickels &dimes at end of week it add’s up! Sometimes adding up to an extra $100 a week. Especially when allocating 40 hours to complete something & it;’s done in 25 hours or less & have time for other things. Motivation is key to monthly risk management meetings which really are designed to keeping employees happy. Retaining employees another very important factor as new employee come aboard they are impressed with long time employees. A few years ago I did put together an employee help book & found them thrown out. Really hands on is still the best way to retain your staff.

    • Laura Ory February 11, 2019 at 3:00 pm #

      Frank, thanks for your comments. It is clear you have a lot of experience and knowledge as a leader. Safety is key…thanks for adding that!

  4. Antonio Muniz February 25, 2019 at 11:56 am #

    Evaluations based on merrit seem to give all my employees the motivation to be better than the next guy, but it’s hard to find employees that want to come to work and give it 110% everyday. I understand that you want to try to keep it light, but we all understand that we have a job to do (Efficiently & Safely). What I have learned is that it’s never about the money you pay someone, instead it’s trying to find those individuals that learn quickly and hate to see any wasted time at all. No matter what the starting rate is you won’t really see someone’s worth until they decide to show it to you, and to me that’s when paying somebody what there worth is acceptable because employees like that make it easy to be a leader and they help you “weed” out the rest of the bad seeds. As we all know not every employee is going to be great worker, and with the way social media is these days it’s hard enough not looking at your cel phone just to check text messages as well as any other social media account. So my take on being a good leader is just being accountable, truthful, & fair. . .if you can get to know your employees on another level than that’s great, but training & evaluations based on merrit should help you lead to the point that your crews are running safely & efficiently.

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