I came across this blog post over at TLNT, written by Derek Irvine, a few weeks back that really resonated with me. The post was actually first published in October of 2012 and has been republished a couple times since due to it’s popularity.
I love the simplicity of what Derek sees as the three keys to being a good boss.
Those three keys are Presence, Praise, and Promise.
I’m going to be lazy and simply quote all three of these keys as Derek wrote them in his post.
- Presence – You not only “manage by walking around,” you show up to meetings on time to signal that you value the work your employees are doing. When you’re meeting with an employee, you shut off or totally ignore your email, IM, texts and any other interruptions to give your full attention to the employee. If employees need your support to push a key decision forward, you lend your visible presence and direct support.
- Praise – You make it a point to give your employees the frequent, timely and specific feedback they need to stay on track and move their projects forward appropriately. You recognize and appreciate them and their efforts that are especially in line with the company’s core values and strategic objectives. Because you are diligent about “catching employees doing something good,” you also help employees receive constructive feedback more readily as they know the feedback is intended to help them advance.
- Promise – You help your employees see the future they have with the organization and in their career. You don’t make undue or unwarranted promises of course, but you are committed to helping your team members grow and develop – and they know it. You seek out training and development opportunities for them and encourage them to go. You give them realistic “stretch” goals to help them develop skills.
When I read through these three keys I see one very clear attribute. Respect. The boss’s respect for their direct report.
In the Presence Key, the boss is respecting the employee’s time. Showing up for meetings on time shows respect for the time of those in the meeting. Giving full and undivided attention to an employee when meeting them one on one shows respect for their time.
In the Praise Key, the boss is respecting the employee’s work and effort. Giving employees regular feedback and recognizing them for their accomplishments.
In the Promise Key, the boss is respecting the employee’s career. Helping employees by being honest and committed to helping them grow and develop by delegating important tasks and getting them the training they need.
Showing your direct report the respect they deserve is, in my opinion, one of the most motivating factors in the workplace. It makes people want to work harder and more effectively. It makes the employee more loyal to their boss and gives them the sense that they are valued and an important part of the boss’s team.