• 7 min read

How to Be a Better Boss: 15 Simple Tips

Joanna Zambas
Joanna Zambas

Content Manager and Career Expert

Boss Talking To Happy Employees

Being a boss is challenging at the best of times, let alone being a good boss. On top of your day to day tasks that might involve the company’s finances, HR resources and managing a remote team, you will also need to ensure that you are a good mentor.

We’ve all been in that position where we have had a crappy manager and considered leaving the company due to a lack of recognition or prospect. Well now is your chance to learn how to be a great leader, so you have a positive and happy team. A boss, much like a coach, should have their staff members' best interests in mind while encouraging improvement and training talent.

There’s a difference between being just a boss and being a leader – it could make or break your entire company. Which one are you? Learn how to be the awesome boss that all employees dream of having with our good boss guide below.

1. Trust Your Employees

Have you had that annoying micro-managing boss that checks on your every move at least 10 times a day? Always put yourself in your employee’s shoes; you would feel demotivated and feel that you will never be able to work on your own. Many employees feel more inspired when they can create their own schedule and work around it. Make sure you give your employees time to breathe and work under their own devices.

2. Delegate

You are probably in your current position as you have worked your way to the top, and if you’re anything like me, you are a control-freak and find it difficult letting go of your responsibilities. You must now learn to delegate the tasks that your employees can do; not to simply take a load off but to allow yourself some time to focus on the new tasks that require your personal attention. The bottom line is: you hired them for a reason, and this will also help them learn, grow and improve.

3. Learn How to Be Honest

Honesty is key when it comes to being a respected leader. Do not tell your employees that the company is doing really well and then there are redundancies shortly after. Employees like to feel safe and will stay within the company much longer if they too can be open and truthful with their manager and feel like they are in an honest environment.

4. Focus on Giving Feedback

This is the only way for an employee to improve and to be more efficient at work. Many employees crave evaluation and often worry when they do not receive it. Don’t leave it until a three-month review to give performance feedback; this will only leave your employee feeling frustrated if it’s something they could have worked and improved on at an earlier stage.

5. Listen to Your Employees

Being able to give orders is easy, but being a good listener is the tricky bit. Your employees deserve to be heard when they have concerns. Good listening skills and maintaining an open line of communication shows your employees that you're seriously considering their opinions and needs.

6. You Are the Motivator

There comes a time where we all feel a bit slump and down in the dumps after a conversation with our supervisor. This one-on-one time should inspire your employees to do better, aim higher and think outside of the box. Make sure they leave your office feeling energised and willing to work harder.

7. Strength Spotter

Are you able to identify people’s strengths and weaknesses? If so, this means that you’re a great leader. Naturally, not every employee will be the best at everything; you must be able to differentiate and delegate to get the best out of your employees and make sure that you have the right person doing a job that is most suited to their skill set.

8. Always Be Approachable

This is one of the most important abilities to be a successful boss. If you are miserable, unapproachable and scary, your employees will not come to you in times of need and your whole organisation will collapse due to a lack of communication. Always having your door open and being there when your employees are in doubt will mean that they will get the support that they need and you will know that they have also received the correct information.

9. Flexibility Is Important

If you take a personal interest in your workers’ lives you will learn about their family matters and may be more flexible when it comes to their working arrangements. This will naturally make your employees feel more valued and in turn, they will be more committed. If you are petty about an employee being a few minutes late to work, they will feel frustrated and will not want to put in the extra time to ensure their work is done to the best standard that it can be.

10. Be Fair and Calm

If you are one of those typical “horrible bosses” that like to raise their voice to be heard, then I’m afraid you will only inflict panic and fear within your staff members. You must always talk to them in a calm manner and provide constructive feedback. Likewise, treating all staff equally is the hallmark of a really good boss. Workers feel appreciated knowing that everyone is treated fairly.

11. Remain Positive

As human-beings, our moods are affected by those around us. If you are angry and moody, your workers will also have the same negative attitude. Staying upbeat will keep them optimistic and happy and they will enjoy being in a positive environment. This is vital for our well-being, as we all spend most of our time at work with our colleagues.

12. Recognize Efforts

This small, but, all-important task is what many employers overlook. Many people actually leave their jobs due to a lack of recognition, they often feel like they are not progressing, or, may not be good enough for that position. Employee recognition is essential if you want to have a motivated, efficient and loyal team. Not all recognition for good work needs to be done in the form of a pay-increase, sometimes a simple thank you is enough to keep your team inspired.

13. Be Supportive

Bosses should build trust with their employees by providing a reasonable amount of support and guidance. Obviously, you don't need to hold anyone's hand, but throwing people into the deep end isn't ideal, either.

14. Have a Sense of Humour

Your office shouldn’t be a comedy show. But, it shouldn’t be an army camp either. As a boss, you should take your work seriously – not yourself. It’s important to have a laugh with your employees every now and again.

15. Show Your Caring Side  

One of the most important characteristics of being a great boss is investing in your employees. That means being actively concerned with the professional goals and aspirations of your workers and helping them achieve this. If you invest time, effort and money on training your staff, they will also invest their time and skills back into your company. As the common saying says: “if it’s not broken, don’t try and fix it”.

Being a boss is a tough job because there is no formula or manual on how to be the best. However, with the correct motivation, you will create a happy working environment and be able to lead your team to victory. Charles Erwin Wilson once said: ‘A good boss makes his [team] realize they have more ability than they think they have so that they consistently do better work than they thought they could.’

Are you a boss? If so, leave a comment in the comment box below to share your feedback on how you manage your team…