Those of us who lead teams need to remind ourselves that we are often the greatest stressor for those we lead. Workplace research shows that about 75% of workers say their boss is the most stressful part of their work … and sometimes the worst. At the same time most bosses are oblivious to this. Or just don’t care.

It can take up to 18 months for a person to work off the stress and anxiety that a “bad” boss causes. Interestingly, the research shows that it’s not WHAT bosses do that makes them difficult; it’s what they DO NOT DO:

  1. Fail to inspire.
  2. Fail to confront mediocrity.
  3. Fail to communicate a clear vision and direction.
  4. Fail to be a team player and lead collaboratively.
  5. Fail to walk the talk.

We see this regularly in the workplace. We who lead at the top of an organization or business are comfortable instilling evaluation for middle-level managers but are less comfortable with similar accountability for ourselves. We started the business or church. We hired the employees.

And so habitual mediocrity can creep in. And we wouldn’t even be able to spot it.

That’s right: The best people who can help our business improve are the frontline people who are doing the work.

The first place to begin is to “clarify the win” for your group. Does everyone understand what they are pursuing? Do those you work with have the same “win” as you?

One of the common functions we provide businesses and organizations is to facilitate the conversations on alignment across departments and leadership levels. Years after a project we get reports about how important that process was for their unity and productivity.

When was the last time you pulled your people away for a period to explore what constitutes a “win” for them? When was the last time your leader had a 360 degree review? If it’s been more than a year, it’s time. And we can help – and do so in a way that isn’t embarrassing or painful but rather serves as a catalyst for a better future.

Your team matters for your personal future!