How to Be the Finance Boss Everyone Loves

How to Be the Finance Boss Everyone Loves

Increasing productivity, improving efficiency, motivating employees — these management goals are pretty much impossible to achieve without your employees’ respect. But how do you get everyone to admire you?

Some managers make the mistake of trying to be friends with their workers, while others go too far in the other direction, making the workplace feel too much like a dictatorship. This week’s Monday Management Minute column offers five pieces of leadership advice you can use to be the type of finance boss everyone wants to work for.

1. Encourage risks — and realize failure is part of the deal.

Employees who fear the consequences of making mistakes will not be truly innovative. While failure does require admonishment on occasion, it’s important to take into account the reasons behind what went wrong. Let your employees know that taking carefully considered risks is OK, and implement an open-door policy that encourages them to come to you for advice on potential issues.

2. Relinquish control — and pay attention to who steps up.

It’s no secret that micromanaging employees usually leads to frustration for everyone involved. Show your team you respect and trust them by giving them opportunities to prove themselves. Delegation is vital for a healthy employer-employee relationship. Bonus: You’ll be able to see who steps up and demonstrates outstanding leadership skills, which will be useful when it’s time for succession planning.

3. Discuss the big picture — and make sure everyone knows their role.

Everyone, including managers, can lose sight of the company’s vision from time to time. Make it a point to regularly discuss your organization’s goals and mission with employees, and be sure the team understands how they fit in. Workers who know how much their boss values them and their contributions will have a renewed sense of commitment and dedication.

4. Admit when you’re wrong — and praise those who get it right.

Refusing to acknowledge you’ve made a mistake won’t help you appear more authoritative. In fact, it’ll accomplish quite the opposite, and it won’t win the respect of employees. Additionally, you’ll be setting a poor example by showing that saving face is more important to you than what’s best for the company. Don’t be afraid to own up to it when you’re wrong, and if an employee comes up with a solution or a more effective process, acknowledge it and express your gratitude.

5. Give regular feedback — and ask for it, too.

Don’t wait until a performance evaluation to let employees know how they’re doing. Your team should receive input from you more frequently than once a year. And during these meetings, be sure to balance positive comments with constructive criticism, and remember that it should be a give-and-take encounter: Ask for their input on how well they feel the group is working together — and opinions on your performance as well.

What leadership advice do you have for bosses feeling disconnected from their employees? Share your tips in the comments below.