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Everyone is Watching You

    Becoming a manager is like stepping into a new spotlight within your company. Suddenly, all eyes are on you as you assume a role that goes beyond mere supervision. You become a guiding force, a role model for your team. But have you considered the impact your words and actions can have on the work environment? It’s not what you might expect, and it’s worth exploring further.

    The Power of Role Modeling

    You might wonder if your team will automatically follow your lead by observing your positive attitude and work ethic. However, it’s important to recognize that simply demonstrating professional behavior won’t be enough to influence your employees’ actions. To truly make an impact, you’ll need to engage in effective communication, provide feedback, and implement the various other actions that will be discussed further in the post.

    Additionally, be aware that while positive role modeling may not yield immediate results, negative behaviors can be quickly adopted if inadvertently supported.

    Negative Influences 

    Anyone who spends time with children will witness the dynamics of negative influences firsthand. As a parent, you may diligently wash dishes after every meal, but it doesn’t necessarily inspire your children to do the same. Yet, if you accidentally let a few swear words slip, you inadvertently encourage them to experiment with their vocabulary—especially when Grandma is visiting! It’s challenging to reverse this behavior once it’s been adopted.

    The inner child occasionally surfaces in all of us. When we encounter someone exhibiting negative behavior, even a stranger, we sometimes find ourselves inclined to follow suit because it aligns with our desires. It’s important to reflect on how these patterns can escalate; think of how riots start.

    As a manager, if you consistently arrive late, cut corners on processes, ignore ringing phones, gossip, or spend time at work on unrelated social media, you are essentially giving your employees permission to do the same.

    The Impact of Talking About Others

    Imagine working for someone who openly criticizes people in front of others. I experienced attending meetings where a speaker joined via phone, and my boss muted the call to make derogatory remarks. It’s an incredibly disrespectful behavior that erodes trust. As I sat in that room, I noticed some individuals chiming in with negative comments, feeding the toxic atmosphere.

    Engaging in gossip and negative chatter about employees, co-workers, or working partners only fuels a culture of mistrust and animosity. Let me share some advice I once heard – anytime you talk about someone, pretend they are in the room with you.

    Authenticity and Consistency

    Actions speak louder than words, but the essence of who you are speaks even louder. Inconsistency between what you say and what you do erodes your credibility. Moreover, engaging in behavior that is not genuine further diminishes your standing as a leader. Take a moment to reflect on your own character. Do you possess integrity, respect, and patience? Do you consistently meet commitments and maintain confidentiality? Building a strong personal brand and genuinely caring about the success of all your employees are crucial aspects of effective management. Your employees pay attention to how you treat everyone and whether you display consistency. It’s worth considering if you genuinely respect your employees and how you can demonstrate it through your words and actions.

    Leading by Example: Key Practices for Exceptional Managerial Role Modeling

    Being a great role model goes beyond the title of “manager.” It requires consistent effort, self-reflection, and a genuine commitment to the well-being and success of your team. Here are some practices that can help you excel in your role and inspire positive change in your workplace:

    1. Clear Communication: Effective role modeling starts with open and transparent communication. Clearly articulate your expectations, goals, and vision to your team. Encourage open dialogue, active listening, and positive and constructive feedback.
    2. Professionalism and Ethical Behavior: Demonstrate professionalism in every aspect of your work. Uphold ethical standards and integrity in all your interactions. Be fair, consistent, and unbiased in your decision-making processes. By displaying high ethical standards, you inspire your team to act with similar integrity.
    3. Continuous Learning and Development: Show a genuine commitment to personal and professional growth. Engage in ongoing learning opportunities, whether through workshops, training programs, or self-study. Encourage your employees to pursue their own growth as well by providing resources and support. Your dedication to continuous improvement will motivate your team to do the same.
    4. Empowerment and Delegation: Trust your employees and empower them to take ownership of their work. Delegate tasks and responsibilities, giving your team members the opportunity to grow and showcase their abilities. Provide guidance and support when needed, but also give them the autonomy to make decisions and contribute to the team’s success.
    5. Recognition and Appreciation: Acknowledge and appreciate the contributions of your team members regularly. Celebrate their successes, both big and small. Recognize their efforts and provide impactful feedback to encourage continuous improvement. By expressing genuine gratitude and recognition, you create a positive and motivating work environment.
    6. Work-Life Balance: Strive to maintain a healthy work-life balance and encourage your employees to do the same. Show understanding and flexibility when personal matters arise, supporting your team’s well-being. By setting a positive example of work-life balance, you demonstrate that productivity and success can coexist with personal fulfillment.
    7. Mentorship and Support: Take an active interest in the growth and development of your employees. Serve as a mentor by providing guidance, sharing experiences, and offering advice. Create opportunities for professional development and advancement within your team. By investing in their growth, you inspire them to reach their full potential.

    Embracing Your Role

    Remember, from the moment you walk through the door each day, everyone is watching you, and your actions carry weight. As a manager, it’s essential to present the best version of yourself. This means leaving problems with the spouse, kids, and cat at home and putting on your Manager Face. While it’s not always easy, particularly when challenges in our own lives surface, it’s a responsibility that comes with the job. When you accepted the role of a manager, you committed to being an inspiring figure for your team.

    Ponder Points

    • Am I consistently demonstrating the values and behaviors I expect from my team members?
    • How can I align my actions more closely with the expectations I set?
    • What do I need to stop doing?
    • What do I need to do more of?

    Head over to the Grow page to move your thoughts into action.

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