How To Be A People’s Leader - Business Insight - Canon Singapore

    How To Be A People’s Leader

    How To Be A People’s Leader

    By Vincent Low

    As I walk to my desk every morning, coffee in hand and ready to take on the day, I’m greeted by familiar voices of my staff going “Good Morning, sir!” or “Morning, boss!” Even after a year of being part of the Canon family, I’m still not used to being greeted as “Boss” or “Sir”. However, they also serve as great reminders of my role and responsibility within our offices.

    There will be staff members who look up to me and count on me for vital decisions for our business, and that is reason enough for me to show great influence as a people’s leader. Indeed, to run a productive and successful business, you will need to build positive relationships with your employees, and here are some ways I go about ensuring just that:

    Be Realistic With Expectations

    We hire employees and assemble a team based on an individual’s ability to get work done well, but ensure that your employees are not set up for failure. It is good to explain all assignments with clear instructions as to what needs to be done, by whom, and by when. It will also be useful to give employees adequate lead time to complete projects and assignments so they will not be working under unrealistic expectations.

    Outlining requirements for any assignment won’t be enough, however. Your employees should also be comfortable in coming to you with questions or ask for help in accomplishing goals you have set for them.

    How To Be A People’s Leader

    Keep Conversations Going

    Conversations with colleagues and employees are often my favourite part of the day. Showing interest in your employees beyond their deadlines and key performance indicators will go a long way in building trusting relationships. You don’t have to get involved with your employees’ personal lives, of course, but it will be good to know about their interests, hobbies, and even the well-being of their families. Something as simple as a “How was your weekend?” could make your employees feel that you care about them. Getting your employees to feel liked and respected encourages productivity and enthusiasm in a workplace.

    Finding out more about your employees will not amount to much if it isn’t reciprocated. Let them know that they can come to you for any potential problems or suggestions on improving operations. This establishes trust and confidence in your employees’ welfare and office happenings. My days in the offices, past and present, go significantly better knowing that I was always within reach of a two-way conversation.

    How To Be A People’s Leader

    Be A People Person

    All feedback to your employees is critical for success, but the delivery to your employees will be key. I have received criticism and negative feedback throughout my career, but the way they were delivered were crucial in my progression. There is a thin line between coming across as direct, and messages that could be misconstrued as personal attacks or bullying.

    Our employees don’t come with a one-size-fits-all approach; one employee may not be as thick-skinned as the other. It will be important to reach out to them differently, even if it means being gentler with one, and going toe-to-toe with the other. This will encourage cohesiveness in the workplace if your employees feel like they aren’t being singled out.

    To be a people’s leader involves a common trait – empathy. Put yourself in the shoes of your employees every now and again, and attempt at becoming both a better boss, and a better person.
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