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5 leadership mistakes that need to be avoided

October 30, 2014

It’s not always easy being a leader and there are some big ‘no-no’s that should be realised when in a position of authority. Which of these five mistakes could be holding your team back?      

5 Leadership mistakes

  1. Having an unclear vision. With no clear vision of what the team as a whole and what team members as individuals are trying to achieve, motivation will suffer, leading to poor performance. People might find themselves spending all their time and energy ‘fire-fighting’ the small relatively unimportant stuff whilst missing the work that really matters. What work drives the business forward? The answer to this question should be understood by everyone in the organisation.
  2. Not listening to the team. A manager is there to steer the team and manage the bigger picture but a common mistake with managers is filling their diary with time spent away from their team. A good leader makes time for each member of the team to understand how they are doing, addressing issues and getting important feedback and information.
  3. Not giving constructive feedback. Monitoring the progress of your team is important. You need to listen – understand if the individual is on track and if they are not – give them sound advice on how to get back on track. Set realistic goals and when they are achieved recognise this and reward the person, at very least with praise, knowing that behaviour that is rewarded is repeated.
  4. Recruiting poor calibre candidates. Some managers will hire consciously or unconsciously staff that do not threaten them intellectually or in ability, they discount people that may have more experience than they do or are more qualified . This might be a mistake. Hiring people that can bring something different to drive the business forward are the ones you want the most. By hiring people who under perform in a role you can halt the progress of the team and the business – whilst the stars you could have had move on to do sterling work or make profit for another company.
  5. Micro Managing staff. A common complaint by staff is that the boss doesn’t give them the freedom to do, learn and explore their job properly but intervenes to an oppressive level. Whilst managers’ do need to know the job is being done well – it’s important to trust staff to do work they are capable of and give them the responsibility, accountability and most of all trust. The assumption by the manager is sometimes that if someone works in a different way to the way they do, this might mean it is a wrong way – this is not always the case. What manager truly wants to do everyone’s job for them anyway? Let’s face it, that’s not being a productive manager.

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