leadershipThere are no shortage of horror stories online detailing outrageous behavior by bad bosses.

In fact, just Googling ‘bad bosses’ returns 6,200,000 results in 0.30 seconds.

You can be the most innovative businessman on the planet, but that doesn’t mean you’ll be a fantastic boss.

Even Apple’s Steve Jobs was a notoriously prickly man, prone to lording his leadership over employees using motivation tactics like bullying, manipulation and fear.

And just because Jobs was one of the most successful leaders of our time doesn’t mean you should go out of your way to behave this way within your own organization.

Leadership Versus Being a Boss

Research shows being bossy doesn’t work in a professional environment, nor does it help with loyalty, commitment, or morale.

Being bossy doesn’t create commitment: In order to get commitment from your team, you must win their hearts and minds. Just like you didn’t like it when your parents told you to cut your hair or clean your room, your team doesn’t like to be constantly nagged and told what to do.

Being bossy doesn’t create change: In a world that is in desperate need of change, you need your team to stand behind you as you make decisions that require flexibility and nimbleness. Change is scary to everyone and, if you’re rude or dismissive, you’ll find walls going up.

Being bossy won’t inspire contribution: When you worked for someone, how likely were you to bring up a problem or challenge if you knew it would be shot down without even being heard? The same goes for your team. If you want contribution, you have to stop and listen. Really listen.

Five Tips for Improved Leadership

It’s important to build team excellence. In fact, at UGN, the people we work with are team members. They aren’t employees. They aren’t staff. They’re colleagues and peers.

To make sure you establish a great working environment, always remember the following five things:

  • You and your must team have clear goals and priorities;
  • Ensure everyone has the resources they need to get the job done;
  • Give people recognition for their contributions;
  • Everyone should feel a connection with the rest of the company; and
  • Decisions are not made in a vacuum, but with input from all.

What kinds of things are you doing to become a leader instead of a boss?