When you’re in a position of leadership, you know there are actions happening behind the scenes. The rest of your team is oblivious to these happenings.
Unfortunately, when they’re happening in secret, your team doesn’t understand the reasons you’re making the choices you’re making.
This may lead to you being viewed as a bad leader. What you need to do is to help your team to understand what’s happening.
In a recent post about bad leadership, I mentioned a couple of things you may be doing that causes your team to think you’re leading poorly. This post is a great example of why you need to help your team understand the inner workings of the business.
You don’t have to go into the deep details but you should at least explain a few key points of the business to your team. This can prevent a lot of grief and agony.
What should you help your team understand?
Basic Financials – There’s a good chance your team doesn’t understand the basic financials of the business. As a leader, you can step forward and explain why your business makes the financial decisions it does.
Explain why one month of bad sales and one month of good sales doesn’t let the company break even. In business it’s not -1 plus +1 = breakeven. Lines of credit have to be paid back. Interest has to be recouped by the banks. There may even be investors that are looking for a piece of the pie.
There’s also the company vehicles that seem like an extravagant waste of money. Yet these expenses create special tax incentives that help keep the business afloat.
The common employee won’t realize these things are happening. Don’t keep them in the dark. Help your team understand the financials of the business.
Bonuses and Parties – What employee doesn’t want to see a big Christmas bonus come across his or her desk? Think back to the bonus check freakout Clark Griswold had in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.
Past experience had told Clark he was going to receive a fat bonus. Only it didn’t happen.
There was no notice that the same type of bonus wasn’t going to be given. And it was a huge letdown for Clark Griswold.
Share with your team that bonuses and Christmas parties aren’t standard for the business. They’re perks that happen when the business does well. But they can only happen when business is well.
Being open and honest about the health of the business will help set your employees’ expectations. They’ll also be more understanding when something doesn’t happen.
Workings Of Leadership – It’s easy to sit back as an employee and think you know what happens within the ranks of leadership. I mean, they see you in your office on the phone or having lunch parties with clients.
Everything looks so simple.
As a leader, you know that’s not the truth. There’s a lot of hard work in leadership.
Help them understand the workings of leadership.
When you decide it’s time to help your team understand, you’ll discover a team that’s more understanding. They’ll feel they have a larger part in the company because you opened up to them and shared some of the vaunted secrets too many leaders are afraid to share.
Don’t be one of those leaders. Learn what your team needs to understand and work on a plan to help them understand.
Question: What are you doing to help your team understand the inner workings of your business? Do you think working a bit harder at explaining the workings of the company could help team morale? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.