Being a leader or business owner is never easy. There are always tough decisions to make—that’s just the nature of the job. And no matter how hard you work, there are factors you can't control, like the economy, your competition, or the market size.
But there is one area where you have complete command. And when done right, it can make the difference between your success and failure. And here’s the best part: It will be one of the easiest choices you’ll ever make. So what’s the magic formula? It’s how you treat your team.
You can decide to either be a great leader or a really awful boss. The latter sees employees as units of production whose only job is to work hard and keep their mouths shut. If they quit, so what? There are always others to replace them.
A great leader, though, knows the opposite is true. They view their team members as humans. They know that every person, no matter if they are on their payroll or just the guy they meet on the street, deserves to be treated with respect and kindness.
Over the years of working with many business owners and leaders, I’ve met a few of those “bosses.” And to be honest, they aren’t people I want to hang out with. In addition, nearly every one of them was unable to sustain long-term success. But I’ve also been lucky enough to experience great leaders who know that when you treat people right, the money will follow.
My friend and my employer, Dave Ramsey, is a huge proponent of serving his team well. At his company, everyone follows the Golden Rule. He knows that when you treat people the way you would want to be treated, nothing can stand in the way of winning
YOU CAN BE THIS KIND OF LEADER TOO. YOU JUST HAVE TO BE INTENTIONAL ABOUT IT. TO HELP YOU GET STARTED, HERE ARE SOME OF THE WAYS YOU CAN APPLY THE GOLDEN RULE TO TEAMWORK.
1. REALIZE THAT PEOPLE NEVER GET ANYWHERE BY THEMSELVES.
We have all had someone who has helped us at some point in our careers. You want to “pay it forward” by supporting each of your team members.
If they have a dream and you can help them, go for it. They may be only with you for a season, but what a productive time it will be. Plus your entire team will watch what you are doing and know you have their best interests at heart.
2. YOU HAVE TO INTERACT.
Block off some time on the calendar every week to walk through the office and talk to your team members. Find out what’s going on in their personal lives. Ask about their family, kids and outside interests. Get to know your team, and get involved!
When you check on your people and spend time with them— even if it’s just for a few minutes—you are showing that you care and that they matter to you, which leads to trust. People work harder for those they have faith in.
3. UNDERSTAND THE DIFFERENT PERSONALITIES.
We’re all wired differently, and we all have our own goals. When you know the personalities on your team, you can approach each one differently in order to connect with them.
4. DON’T EXPECT YOUR TEAM TO BE JUST LIKE YOU
They aren’t. What motivates you might not motivate them. Get to know their strengths, weaknesses, likes, and dislikes.
5. ACCEPT AND APPRECIATE YOUR TEAM.
Nothing kills morale quicker than an uninvolved leader who doesn’t acknowledge the success of people on their team. Every person who works for you should be hearing positive words from you a few times a week.
Loyalty is a two-way street. Strong leaders who treat their people well have teams that become their “cheering sections” and want the best for them. From that point on, it’s all golden.
By: Chris Hogan
Chris Hogan speaks all over the country at businesses, associations and colleges on money and leadership. He also conducts on-site training sessions for organizations of all sizes. As a former All-American college football player and business owner, Chris understands that leadership is essential for the success of any team. You can follow Chris Hogan on Twitter at @ChrisHogan360 or check him out here: daveramsey.com/speakers/Chris-HoganRead More Articles by Chris Hogan