Whenever we run a ‘Profit by way of Great Leadership Course’, at the onset of the day we always ask the delegates “Hands up those of you who have ever worked for a great boss?”. I guarantee no more than one or two hands will pop up. But when we then ask “Have any of you ever worked for a lousy boss?” I guarantee that EVERY hand will go up.
Why is it that in the UK we seem to have more lousy bosses than great bosses? I suspect it is because many people get promoted to their level of incompetence and are never trained in leadership as they progress up the slippery slope of advancement, or they leave their jobs and go into business for themselves with little or no experience of ‘leading’ a team.
By the way; a great boss in my view is not a boss who is soft and easy to wiggle on your little finger, the best definition of a great boss I have ever heard is “A great boss is liked a little, disliked a little but respected a lot”. Hey and by the way being a great boss is sometimes a very lonely place as you often have to make very unpopular decisions and have to have very difficult conversations with staff members which can destroy relationships, always though a philosophy that I believe in is “be hard on the issues but as soft as you can be on the people”. It is gaining that respect that is the challenge!!
[testimonial]A great boss is liked a little, disliked a little but respected a lot[/testimonial]
It matters not that a boss may be the leader of a huge corporation or a Licencee with 5 staff; the traits, methods and techniques of leadership are the same no matter what the size of organisation. In fact in a pub, off licence, hotel, club, whatever, with as few as 5 staff members it is more vital to be a great boss because if you are not then it takes only 5 people to destroy your business (well, it will be you that has actually destroyed it by your lack of leadership skills). If you ever hear a boss say “If I want something done well, I have to do it myself” don’t work for them!! Great bosses empower staff to perform at levels as high as or even higher than they themselves do. This they achieve by investing time and money in their staff by way of training, responsibility and motivation.
Sadly, I’ve all too often heard the phrase “I don’t spend money on training my staff because they keep leaving”. Well, I say “Think of the damaging cost to your business if you don’t train them and they stay with you!!”.
Frederick Hertzberg, an American psychologist who became one of the most influential names in business management said “To motivate staff you need to”:-
- Ensure that your staff have recognition and status
- Have challenging and interesting work
- Be given responsibility and authority
- Have a way of knowing they have achieved something daily
- Have an opportunity to develop their skills and promotional prospects
Seems to me that a licensed premises, no matter how big or small, should be able to put such a system in place.
All businesses should seek continuous improvement, in business and staff performance, by practising great leadership. This can be achieved by:-
- Setting clear goals and objectives
- Training staff to ensure they are capable of performing the tasks set for them (and agreed by them)
- Managing their performance by way of their results and their behaviour
- Taking corrective action, and re-train when necessary
- Monitoring closely – and rewarding their performance
- and most importantly; Listen to them – they may have better ideas than you!
All of this leads back to continuously improving your staff and your business. Seems pretty solid to me!!