We all want to be strong leaders and be error free, but we all make mistakes.

Here are Five Common Mistakes Leaders Make

  1. Absence of a clearly defined vision
    • Bill was a group leader and thought his team was aware of departmental goals, objectives, strategies and the overall vision. The truth was, they were not.
    • Suggestion: Take time to clarify and document the team’s vision, get others involved in understanding and refining it, and link all key processes to it. (This includes your hiring strategy)
  2. Minimal communication
    • Many leaders only hold meetings and share information on an “as needed” basis. The lack of interaction and regularly conducted meetings can cause the team to lose focus and prevents the opportunity for team members to build synergy and trust.
    • Suggestion: Keep in touch; make yourself available, schedule both team and skip level meetings on a regular basis, and refine the agenda as needed. Don’t do all the talking; engage the team and let them share their thoughts, accomplishments, and obstacles. Don’t forget about reinforcing your vision and the status of goal attainment.
  3. Failing to hold others accountable
    • It’s not uncommon for leaders to NOT reach out and provide meaningful feedback about what went well, and what did not. This inhibits growth, suppresses results, and can cause frustration and confusion.
    • Suggestion: Determine the quality and quantity of work and behaviors you desire in order to achieve your vision. Hold everyone accountable for supporting the vision and provide timely, specific, and meaningful feedback when deviations occur. (And don’t wait until your annual or semi-annual assessment to address gaps!).
  4. Failing to recognize good performance
    • Many leaders feel everything is part of their staff’s job. This can leave team members questioning what it takes to go “above and beyond”; they want to be recognized for their effort and accomplishments!
    • Suggestion: Take the time to look for things that are special and point them out. During your team meetings have the team recognize peer contributions; you’ll be surprised what you may hear. This can be inspiring and a simple “thank-you” can go a long way.
  5. Over managing
    • Most individuals are ready, willing, and able to do their job, and they want to excel. They are not afraid of taking a risk and don’t need to be over-managed. Over-managing causes the loss of feeling empowered and is a huge de-motivator.
    • Suggestion: Validate that the required skill sets exist, share your expectations, and let your staff “run with it”.

We all make mistakes! The key is to recognize them, own them, learn from them, and move on!

Here’s a Wealth of Information

Each week we partner with QwikCoach and provide the ability for you to reinforce or expand your knowledge of a prior topic.

Last week’s tip focused on 5 Behaviors Of A Team.

Go to QwikTips to read more! There are two different versions–one for visitors and one for licensed QwikCoach users.

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