Seattle — Oct. 11
The “World’s Best Boss” coffee mug, some could argue, was made famous by Michael Scott, the self-delusional character of the NBC series “The Office.” Michael purchased the mug for himself and proudly displays it on his desk at the beginning of each episode. Overinflated ego aside, what really separates good bosses from great bosses?
Fierce Inc., a leadership training firm, uncovered two characteristics distinguishing good managers from bad based on results of a survey of more than 1,700 corporate executives and employees.
Eighty percent of respondents reported that the most important thing a boss can do is to solicit and value employee input, and 37 percent felt that it was also important for a manager to offer constructive feedback.
Communication is at the core of the employee-supervisor relationship. Employees who receive constructive feedback overwhelmingly have positive, productive connections with bosses and coworkers. Furthermore, companies that encourage honest feedback make more money than companies that don’t.
In a study by the Corporate Executive Board and the Harvard Business Review, organizations that rated highly in the area of open communication delivered a 10-year TSR (total shareholder return) of 7.9 percent, compared to 2.1 percent at other companies.
What can bosses do to ensure that they earn the “World’s Best Boss” mug for this year’s National Boss Day? Here are three ways:
Hold employees able to hear the truth: When an employee asks for the truth or needs to hear it — whether it be about personal performance or the company’s well being — be completely honest. A great boss has the ability to be candid without damaging relationships.
Seek multiple perspectives: When making key decisions, seek out diverse perspectives while inviting pushback and challenges. Insight will not only lead to the best decisions for the company, it will also enrich relationships with employees.
Be a role model: Great bosses know they need to model the behaviors they want to see in their office. If they want authentic, honest employees, then they need to mirror those qualities in every interaction and conversation. A leader can set the tone of the whole organization by his or her actions.
National Boss Day is Oct. 16.