Lead on Purpose

Promoting Leadership Principles in Product Management

Leadership strategies to improve workplace culture

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Guest post by Gabe Nelson

Great leaders inspire. Great leaders don’t dominate a room, they motivate it. Whether you are an executive manager of a large corporation or the IT guy who has no subordinates, you need to step into leadership roles with conviction and consideration.

When you believe in the work you do unwaveringly, it will inspire people. When you come from a place of understanding and care, it will motivate people. Simply being present and demanding top performance from your workforce isn’t the way things are done anymore. It’s important to know and be considerate of your employees’ feedback.

Here we’ll go over a few useful leadership strategies and practices anyone can implement that will help improve the workplace culture.

Communicate and Collaborate

As a leader in an organization or the leader of your own freelance business, communication is critical. Maintaining open and honest lines of two-way traffic makes others feel there is respect in the partnership and that they can trust you.

When colleagues build trust, there is an inherent shift in the culture and the way people operate. They no longer have to worry if team members are being honest with them and will feel more secure within the organization. 

As a leader in any industry, remember that you are collaborating with folks and want to encourage their participation. The more information they have and the more they engage, the better.

It can be challenging for sure but try to take a moment to collect yourself and your thoughts to make sure you articulate your ideas well. Be upfront, be genuine, and be kind.

People respond and bond when they understand the underlying goal. Simply by taking the time to communicate the purpose of assigned work can improve the culture. Everyone wants to feel like they’re included.

Create Shared Experiences

Being part of a shared experience brings people together and creates a bond unlike any other. As a leader who wishes to inspire and motivate those around you, cultivate these types of experiences.

If your business has the means, try hosting a monthly dinner. When people get the chance to interact outside of the workplace, it will encourage others to want to participate in company fun, thus solidifying your work culture in and out of the office.

Another good option from Forbes’ Agency Council members is to encourage company volunteering where everyone comes together to help a larger cause. Participating in a meaningful joint effort can aid in forming a very strong connection among your team.

Give a Shout Out

A good leader knows how to show those they work with that they are appreciated. A little praise can mean a lot. A fun way to do that is to set up a ‘Kudos board’ where everyone has the opportunity to give a shout out to their peers. You can do this on a whiteboard, on your intranet or by using tools like 15five. This gives everyone has a chance to participate and generate good vibes.

By doing this, you nurture a healthy and encouraging work culture, which helps the bottom line in the long run. It’s well worth the investment.

Become a True Leader

True leaders understand that they are not in it alone. They open themselves up to creating a workplace culture that encourages and supports others. Communication, comradery, and expressing appreciation all play a pivotal role in fostering such a space.

Let your actions and enthusiasm inspire and motivate those around you to thrive. 

Gabe Nelson is a content specialist of over 7 years of experience, currently working with Bonus.ly. Bonus.ly is a company that helps with employee recognition to bring teams together. Just out of high school he set off crab fishing on the Bering sea in Alaska. From there he went back home to finish his college degree at the University of Montana. He has a passion and keen understanding when it comes to Employee Relations inside and out. He has written hundreds of content pieces in numerous niches. Currently, he lives in Missouri with his wife and kids.

The Product Management Perspective: Improving the workplace is an area that product managers can affect in a big way. As you motivate and lead product teams you can make a big difference in how they feel about the work they do.

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