Business managers are constantly thinking about what they can do to help their company succeed. Often, the answer is right under their nose – unfortunately, though, many leaders are looking in the wrong place for the solution. They end up making critical management mistakes, such as the following seven, that could potentially spell the end of their business.
1. Delaying projects until 'the time is right'
It's tempting for managers to put off projects or new strategies, especially when it seems like there's some aspect of the business that needs improving, says the Harvard Business Review. However, it's important to get the ball rolling with new initiatives. Delaying will likely hold your business back from its full potential down the road.
2. Being too strict
Particularly in today's day and age, a certain amount of flexibility at work is highly valued. No one enjoys being micro managed, or coming into work knowing their manager is going to be overly strict. An overbearing boss is likely to drive employees back into their shells, discouraging them from coming forward with innovative ideas. Either that, or they might even be inclined to quit and find a place that is more flexible.
A manager who rules with an iron fist is unlikely to lead the company to success.
3. Being too flexible
At the same time, a manager who is too flexible could jeopardise the company. Offering too much paid time off, letting employees do whatever they please – this is not an effective way to run a business. Leaders must strike a balance between strict and flexible. This way, they earn the respect of their employees but allow them personal agency in their work, claims LinkedIn writer Natalie Tarpinian.
4. Hiring too many or too few
Bringing on new staff is key to growing a business, but you have to get the numbers right. If you hire too many, you'll bleed your cash flow dry and potentially have to deal with layoffs down the road. On the other hand, hiring too few will leave you understaffed. Your current employees will be overworked and might quit, leaving you back where you started.
5. Not explaining the strategy
Too often, managers know the business' strategy inside and out – but do the employees? If there is a disconnect between management and those on the ground, the strategy will be jumbled. This could easily compromise your business if it isn't quickly dealt with. Make sure that everyone in the company fully understands their role, the goals of the business and the strategy they need to take to get there.
It's important for the entire company to be clear on the business strategy.
6. Not listening or taking feedback
Inc.com emphasises the importance of listening to both your colleagues and to the team under you. Managers who don't listen won't earn the respect of their employees – again, this makes it unlikely that they will come forward with new ideas or suggestions.
The same goes for receiving negative feedback, whether from your employees, clients or business associates. Putting their critiques into action shows that you're on their team.
7. Neglecting to properly train employees
If you aren't making any of these critical mistakes, but your business seems to be in a lull, the problem might lie elsewhere. In some cases, employees throughout a business can get into a rhythm where they stop working on their professional development. A lack of training can lead to a lack of skills for the job and feeling a lack of both progress and company investment – this in turn leads to a lack of motivation and lower employee retention rates. For obvious reasons, this can hurt your business!
The best way to help inspire them to give their all to your company is by offering them leadership and communication training initiatives, such as those offered by ICML. Who knows – maybe you, too, could benefit! Reach out to us today for more information.