As a leader, part of your responsibilities as the boss is to inspire your employees. This may seem like a complicated and daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be difficult. By adopting some simple habits and demonstrating them every day, you can inspire your employees to have a more positive attitude toward their work, customers, and other staff members.
Six Easy Ways You Can Inspire Your Team
Start the day with a smile. As the boss, your attitude and demeanor upon entering the office can influence the kind of day it will shape up to be for your employees. A warm smile sends a message of optimism for what’s ahead, and it evokes a sense of being encouraged and supported. There’s even some research out there that indicates smiling can influence others to smile. What could be more uplifting and productive than an office full of joyful people?
Take an interest in them. Your employees are real people with families, pets, unique hobbies, challenges to overcome, triumphs to celebrate, etc. Take the time to show an interest in them beyond what they do for your company. A simple “How are you?” or “What’s new with you?” or “How was your weekend?” can show team members you care about them as individuals.
In addition to making the effort to communicate like this every day, I also enjoy scheduling one-on-one lunches with each of my staff members individually every quarter. By carving out this time, I’ve learned more about them, they’ve learned more about me, and we’ve formed stronger working relationships. As a result, they are more engaged and enthusiastic employees.
Demonstrate patience. You make mistakes, and so will your employees at times. It’s one of the realities of being human. Show patience and understanding when your team members mess up. Keep a cool head, discuss the mistake and how to correct it, and identify a plan/steps to avoid it in the future. A calm demeanor on your part when addressing slip-ups will help your employees concentrate on what they need to do to resolve the issue. Wouldn’t you agree that’s a much better approach than yelling and chastising, which makes people defensive and disheartened?
Always use ‘Please’ and ‘Thank you.’ As a parent, I’m constantly reminding my children to do this. Sadly, I see plenty of grown-up, professional adults who fail to mind their manners. When you say, “please,” “thank you,” “excuse me,” etc., you demonstrate respect for other people. When people hear those magic words, they know they matter to you. By showing your attention to minding your p’s and q’s, you’ll help foster a culture of caring and mutual respect within your company.
Have a sense of humor. According the Mayo Clinic, laughter helps alleviate stress and can make people feel more capable of dealing with adversity. By infusing some lighthearted banter at work, you can help employees feel more at ease and relaxed. Of course, choose your humor wisely so you don’t offend or alienate people.
Empower them. Give them an opportunity to share their ideas about how to do their jobs better and how your company can improve its processes and products. By giving them a say in how things are done, you can instill in them a sense of ownership of their work and your company’s success. In my experience, people are excited to bring value to a company when they feel their thoughts are valued.
Aspire to Inspire. The attitudes and actions you bring to work every day will have an impact on your employees, so be conscious of how you conduct yourself.