Learn 5 Activities Great Leaders Do to Create Happy and Engaged Employees
The other day I was scrolling through my Facebook feed and came across some inspiring leadership and business advice from Greg Butterfield. Greg Butterfield is very successful in business and life. I've been lucky enough to spend time with Greg through out my business career and each time we talk I leave uplifted and energized to do more with my life.
One of the leadership principles Greg teaches is to always take care of your people and make them great. When I read his Facebook post a few days ago, I wanted to write it down so I could study it and apply his awesome leadership principles. This blog is a mini business journal of key principles and learnings that I want to remember and pass on to future leaders. So I wanted to write down Greg's inspiring words here.
What It Takes to Be a Successful Leader
Greg quoted a study that Google did that showed data on the key activities of successful leaders. The study and data showed that periodic one-on-one coaching (rather than superior technical knowledge) ranked as the #1 key to being a successful leader. Greg wrote, "Great managers must focus on coaching sessions with their direct reports."
5 Activities Great Leaders Focus On
1. Hire Fewer People, But Pay Them More
Greg wrote, "The key to affording higher wages is a lower total wage cost as a percent of revenue. You have to remain competitive, and the best companies know that one great person can replace three good ones."
2. Give Recognition and Show Appreciation
Greg wrote, "The deepest principle of human nature is the craving to be appreciated. It's impossible to be motivated and do great work if you don’t feel that somebody cares and appreciates what you do."
3. Set Clear Expectations and Give Employees a Clear Line of Sight
Greg wrote, "Great managers explain how their people’s work contributes to the greater objectives of the company and then help them align their individual priorities with those of the firm."
4. Don't Demotivate, Focus on the Positive
Greg wrote, "The best managers are less concerned about motivating their people and more concerned about NOT demotivating them. They consider it their job to prevent the hassles that block their team’s performance. Such demotivators are usually related to issues with people or processes. The best thing you can do for employees is hire only ‘A’ players to work alongside them. Excellent colleagues trump everything else."
5. Help People Play to Their Strengths
Greg wrote, "What ultimately sets great managers apart from the merely good ones is that they help their people play to their strengths. A strength isn’t just something you’re good at; it’s only a strength if it literally gives you strength, gives you energy. In turn, a weakness, is something that, though you may be good at it, drains the life out of you."
He also wrote, "Thus, a key function of great managers is helping individual employees refocus and prune their jobs over time so they focus more on activities that give them strength and less on activities that make them weak. Though there will always be parts of anyone’s job that are draining, the companies that do better at minimizing these will have a more energized team."
I'm grateful that Greg shared this great business advice on how to become a better leader and build teams of happy and engaged employees. My goal is to work on one of the five principles per week for the next five weeks.