“Too often, the boss is the first one to share their perspective, leaving their team with no other option but to agree,” says Currie. She stresses that the role of a good boss is to stimulate thinking, and invite the group to share a broader set of ideas. Try starting with this, says Currie: “Ask your employees to share what they think, before you provide your commentary. If you feel the urge to speak up first, ask the following question: ‘I’ve got some thoughts on the topic, but first I want to hear from each of you. What do you think about ______?’” This will let your employees know how much you value their input and opinions.
Provide a clear map
It’s really hard, if not impossible, for your team to reach a goal if you’ve never told them exactly what that is. You may think it’s obvious but remember, you are the one with the overall vision and the best person to see how it’s coming together. Great managers will take the time to write down clear goals and set measurable expectations for each employee, says Alison Green, of the blog Ask A Manager and author of Ask a Manager: How to Navigate Clueless Colleagues, Lunch-Stealing Bosses, and the Rest of Your Life at Work.
Have high expectations and high attentiveness
“The best managers know how to push you toward ambitious goals without getting into the realm of the unreasonable or the unrealistic,” Green says. This means not only knowing what your employees are capable of but understanding what they’ll need from you to get there. “While good managers have high expectations, they’re willing to brainstorm with you about how to meet those expectations, not just assigning you a big goal and then disappearing,” she says.