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Wednesday, October 9, 2019

11 Classic Leadership Mistakes, and How They Can Be Avoided

These are the classic leadership mistakes to be avoided, no matter what your industry:

They don’t delegate
Failing to delegate is the classic leadership mistake. Don’t fall into the trap. The most effective leaders delegate nearly everything except the ultimate responsibility. Anything else is just power hoarding, which wins the respect and trust of absolutely nobody.

They focus on the title
President. CEO. Managing Director. What does it really matter at the end of the day? You’re the boss and everyone knows you’re the boss, so act like it. Which means be an inspiration, and get your hands dirty, and take responsibility for everything that you should take responsibility for (but never by failing to delegate). That’s what a boss does. It’s not in a name.

They take the credit but none of the blame
This is a classic mistake. Leaders who take the credit of their subordinates rarely remain in situ for long. And passing the buck is the most cardinal of sins. If you want to be respected, share the praise where it is due, and take the heat too. People will want to work their very hardest for you if they see that this is your approach.

They don’t put in the hours
Leaders should be the first to arrive and the last to leave. It is about inspiring others, not using your position to your own ends. Similarly, promote work/life balance by not being afraid to take a vacation, but do everything within the confines of established policies and procedures, and you will win the respect of your staff.

They see it as payback time
Most people have had a bad experience at some stage or another in their career at the hands of a senior manager. Yet leaders who hold grudges and see their time at the top as a period of revenge fail to grasp two critical concepts. The first is that you are exacting revenge on the wrong people. The second is to understand that this is a viscous circle, and failing to break it will drag down the organization.

“If you were treated badly on your way up, then rise above it and be determined to be different: it will win you far greater respect, and your leadership regime will be infinitely more successful as a result,” says Peter Tarrant, a business writer at Australia2Write and NextCoursework.

They remain aloof
Being a leader absolutely does not mean remaining isolated in your ivory tower: not only will you lose the respect of your employees but by positioning yourself outside of the collective you will be unable to gauge what is happening in the business. You will also fail to cement the relationships that are so important to the fundamental success of any business or organization.

They don’t recognize the next generation of talent
Nothing lasts forever, and there are always new talents coming through. Great leaders embrace that fresh talent, and harness it effectively. Failing to recognize it or, worse, deliberately stunting it, as some leaders are prone to do, shows a failing to grasp the important consideration of change. Everything changes. If you fail to adapt to that change, then your time as a leader will be oh so brief.

They don’t give feedback
In order to improve and grow, employees need feedback. And that means both the negative and the positive.

“It is a critical function of a leader to not only inspire in his or her actions but to impart knowledge and point out what needs to be done to improve. That’s what most people want to do, so be constructive in that feedback and they will follow you,” says Carlton Walsh, a communications manager at BritStudent and 1Day2Write.

They don’t listen
Failing to listen is one of the most frequently made mistakes of managers at any level of a business. In fact, failing to listen is a human error. Yet leaders are more prone to this than anyone because sometimes there is a pervading sense of superiority. Failing to listen at this critical juncture can be fatal to a regime however. You don’t need to act on everything, but you certainly always need to know what’s going on.

They fail to grasp what motivates people
Leaders may fundamentally fail to recognize what motivates people, and the truth is, there is no one single thing. However, thinking it is only money is a huge mistake to make, and will shift focus from the many things that matter. Taking the time to appreciate what really motivates the workforce individually, and enacting upon that, is where great leaders really step up.

They don’t care
Not caring doesn’t mean that the leader doesn’t value the company. It means that they fail to truly value the people who work in the business, and not just as a commodity. Of course it’s difficult to form an emotional attachment to everyone in a large company, but showing a human side, and compassion where it is due is far from a sign of weakness, as some leaders think it is, but instead is a sign of real dedication to what makes a difference in a business: the people.

About the Author:
Marketer and all-round business expert Michael Dehoyos loves nothing better than assisting organizations in their digital marketing approach. He can be found at PHDKingdom and AcademicBrits, and contributes to a number of other sites and blogs including Dissertation Help.

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