Great leadership is about creating great relationships with your teams and inspiring them to go above and beyond. Here are 15 things that great leaders say to create highly engaged and motivated teams.
I’d love your input
When we ask people to contribute, we show that we value their opinion, and respect their expertise. There is the added benefit that they become more committed when they are more involved.
It’s time to go home we can get back to this tomorrow
We all talk about work-life balance, but how many of us practice it with our staff? Yes there ae days when we need to work long hours, but we shouldn’t let this just become a habit as that will lead to burnout. If there is no need for the staff to be working late then let them go early, it will be much appreciated.
Sorry, my fault
No one is perfect and owning up to mistakes it builds trust, and it also sets a great example for the rest of the team. When accountability starts at the top, the rest of the team will model it.
Great effort, we will get there next time
Recognising success is great, but not everything ends in success. If the team put in great effort but just didn’t quite make it, then we should at least praise the effort. What gets recognized gets repeated, and we want that great effort to be repeated.
I just told your boss what a great job you did
It’s great to tell someone they did a great job, but you score extra points if you share that with others too, especially their direct boss. It makes the praise feel more authentic and genuine s you’re prepared to share it with someone else.
What do you need from me to make this a success?
This is my favorite approach to leadership as it clearly shows that we are in this together and that their success is one of our concerns, and we are more than happy to contribute to it. It also clarifies whether or not hey they everything they need to be successful. Once they say I have everything I need, then they have accepted accountability for the outcome which will help increase the probability of success.
I value your contribution
Everyone wanted to feel valued and needed as it helps to build confidence and self-esteem. The more confident our teams are the better, as confidence is a key contributor to achieving success.
So what did we learn from this that we can use next time?
Mistakes are always going to happen, but by asking this question we avoid the blame game and we can look to learn from it and improve for the next attempt.
I have complete faith in you.
It pays dividends to let your teams know that you trust in their abilities as it will help them build trust in their abilities.
How could we do this better?
There is nothing worse than an arrogant know-it leader who thinks he’s cornered the market in great ideas. Trust me I know I worked for one. With this one phrase, you dispel that illusion and show that you’re open to input, and that collaboration will help us achieve the best results.
Are you sure that you have the capacity to do this now?
Too many people struggle to say no to the boss, often committing to the workload that is both unhealthy, and will not lead to success. By asking the question genuinely and with concern it will allow people to agree to what is achievable without seriously over committing themselves. It also acts to remind them that we are interested in their health and success.
Let me call my secretary to book us a meeting
It can be daunting for staff to book a meeting with the boss, especially if they have a secretary who guards theirs with the ferocity of a Pitbull. If you’re serious about having a meeting to discuss things, then be the one to arrange the meeting, it sets a completely different tone and shows that the meeting is important to you. Also, your secretary is much less likely to shuffle it if time gets tight.
Two of the greatest words any employee can hear from their boss. Simple, zero costs and massively impactful. The more you say it, the more you will have to say it as performance will improve.
Politeness costs nothing. A lack of politeness, on the other hand, shows disrespect and a feeling of entitlement, neither of which is going to build trust and loyalty within the team.
How are you doing?
‘No one cares how much you know until they know you care is one of my favorite Theodore Roosevelt quotes and the best way to show you care is to ask people how they are doing.
Leadership is often seen as difficult and complex, but just using these 15 simple phrases it will help you to keep it simple and create highly engaged teams.
Article first appeared in Inc in 2016