by Norman McBrien, co-founder and Head of Operations of GoConqr
One of the main challenges when facing leaders in a startup or small business is the ability to ensure that the quality and efficiency of the team improves as the company scales. This can be difficult, because naturally when a business is growing, leaders need to relinquish some control on day to day running and trust the team around them.
How can one make this transition from maker to leader? It’s advisable to be surrounded by the best resources for professionals and to absorb all the advice you can to try to improve your leadership capacities.
Here are three keys to managing a business with productivity and efficiency:
1. Balance between delegation and intervention.
One of the most complicated aspects of leadership is finding the balance between delegating to your team and intervening in the decisions that you consider important. Each leader has a natural tendency on how involved they like to be. Striking the right balance depending on the situation is crucial; on the one hand, you should give enough autonomy to the skilled workers in each area to do their jobs, but you must also monitor performance, analyse results and decide on objectives in the medium and long term. No extreme is good, because if your policy is too interventionist, you’ll limit the potential of your employees; but if you are too passive, you run the risk of losing control. New starts and complex projects will always need extra attention. The most important thing is to be consistent to your team about the mission and the goal, and ensure that if anyone is unsure or needs help, that your door is always open. Therefore good communication is the key.
2. Collaborative Working.
A simple way to get team members aligned is to involve them in idea generation and problem solving. Brainstorming solutions is a great way to do this. The more team members you include in early stage brainstorming, the better. Not only will involving staff in the creative process improve motivation, it usually leads to a greater solutions. When presenting the points you want to deal with during the brainstorming, you can use online courses and include media resources, such as videos or images, to enrich the presentation and enhance the power of your message. Where possible, try to include members from many aspects of the company in initial idea formation meeting, since each one can make valuable contributions that you hadn’t previously considered and offer different perspectives. So with this brainstorming session you’ll have a double win: the workers will be more motivated and the creativity process will be more enriching and dynamic.
3.Energy and positivism.
It seems silly… but it can make a difference! Entering the office with the high spirit and a smile transmits a great positive energy to your team. On the other hand, if you show up stressed, sullen and negative, the team is likely to become even more overwhelmed and more stressed than usual. Therefore, it doesn’t matter if you have a bad day, you must try to portray a positive and energetic outlook and not show disappointment or pessimism in the face of any setbacks that may arise. However, this doesn’t mean that you highlight any issues or mistakes; good leaders are able to combine a positive attitude with the ability to give constructive feedback and make tough decisions.
By following these tips you can improve your leadership skills and help improve productivity and your work environment. And remember, keep experimenting with these methods and others to find the right leadership style for you.
Norman McBrien is co-founder and Head of Operations of GoConqr, a social learning and business platform that offers free tools and content to help students, teachers, and professionals.