As a business advisor, I’ve noticed that some business owners preach the critical systems for their teams to follow, but then override the systems themselves.
You as the leader may be getting ‘caught’ by your actions, and this is a problem.
Reflect on your leadership style
As business owners, we need to be humble enough to self-reflect and determine if we do this. Some examples may include:
- The owners require all employees to leave the best parking spots available for customers – except the owners park in the best spot themselves!
- All employees have to clean up after themselves – and then they have to clean up after the owner.
- The owner asks that all communication be mature and respectful – unless the owner is dealing with a real idiot, then it’s acceptable to be disrespectful.
As a leader, you may have many followers. Your employees watch you all the time. The smart remarks send a message. The sarcasm sends a message. Your body language sends a message. The way you deal with the little and the big issues sends a message to your followers.
A bad example & mixed messages
If you do something dishonest, the message is that dishonesty is acceptable, but when you demonstrate integrity by honouring your word, you send a positive message.
If you find yourself thinking, ‘it’s OK because I am the owner’ - this is a problem. It’s true you can do whatever you want as the owner, but that doesn’t mean you are doing what is best!
More is caught than taught
The reason I say ‘caught’ is because you may be taking action but are unaware of the message you are sending.
If your followers ‘catch’ you in the act, they will ignore the words you teach.
Actions speak louder than words and all your actions are silently speaking to your employees.
What message are you acting?