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Leadership Language is Important

It has been said, “people join companies but leave managers.” Employees want to end their workday feeling valued and respected for their job. Leaders are more important now than ever. Between Covid and an uncertain economy, employees are distracted, worried, and pulled in multiple directions at work and home. Organizations cannot afford to lose good employees. Sometimes, the little things employees need to hear from their leaders can make a huge difference.

Here are a few tips that, as leaders, we can say more often to our employees that can make a difference in the road ahead:

“How is your family?” We must make more significant efforts to get to know our employees individually and incorporate that knowledge into our regular interactions. People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care, and this will make employees more loyal and motivated as they feel valued.

“Thank You.” Praise, especially from an authority figure, is incredibly fulfilling. People love to hear positive feedback, and in most cases, they are willing to work harder to keep the compliments and thanks coming.

“What do you think?” Asking employees for their opinions, ideas, and preferences helps to unlock buy-in and achievement. They will feel much more invested because they are active in completing a project.

“I need your help.” Employees need to feel like valued partners as this gives the sense that they are more invested in the company’s future and that their opinions matter.

“What do you need from me?” Employees may be anxious about asking the boss what they need, whether it is new equipment or more time on a project. By asking what you can give them, you extend permission for your people to make those requests.

“What would you like to do here?” Employees are hired for specific jobs, but as organizations evolve, so have your people. That is why it is a good idea to check in with each employee periodically to ask what they’d like to be doing. You may not be able to accommodate every preference, but employees will be happier and more motivated when their job matches their skills.

“This task is in your hands-I’m stepping back.” Micromanaging and excessive hovering does not send the right message to employees, as they may feel that you don’t trust them. Once you’ve delegated a task, please step back, and let employees do what you’ve asked them.

As leaders, we must remember that business is always personal and that people make companies work. By reaching each employee personally, they will be more motivated to contribute to the organization’s ultimate success on the road ahead.


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