4 Areas Where Your Leadership Style Can Impact Business Success
As a leader, you are not only responsible for the strategic direction of your business area, but also for the success of your staff. All too often we learn of cases of poor leadership, which in most cases leads to loss of staff, low levels of innovation, and overall unhappiness of staff members. Regardless of your role, it is important to understand that how you treat and interact with your staff can have a significant impact on business success. If you’re unsure whether your leadership style will have a negative effect on your staff, be mindful of the following four areas when going about your day-to-day role:
1. Job satisfaction
The overall happiness of your staff within their roles is crucial for business success. Whilst you cannot control external factors such as family life, you are able to significantly impact their job satisfaction. Ensure that employees feel valued in their role, that they are making meaningful contributions, and that the work culture is of a positive nature. A consistent work life balance is also important, and will contribute greatly to their overall happiness.
2. Staff retention
Closely linked with job satisfaction, it is important to note that your leadership style will also impact the retention of staff. If the work culture is one that is positive and constructive, employees are more likely to value their jobs higher. If they feel that they are consistently undervalued and overworked, they are likely to look for other employment. As a leader, you must understand that your actions will significantly impact the choices of staff, and it is therefore something that you should always consider when analysing your leadership style.
3. Level of innovation
It is no secret that innovation must come from the top in order to be effective. Unless management encourages innovative practices, employees will generally feel uncomfortable in suggesting new ideas or processes. As a leader who would like to see innovation take place, your leadership style must ensure that employees understand that it is okay to be wrong, and to suggest unique concepts. If innovation is crucial to the success of your business, you must ensure that your leadership style is encouraging of it at all times. If it is not, you will find that with time, innovation does not occur and employees will feel less comfortable in sharing their views.
4. Overall business reputation
If your business is one which thrives on customer service or client relationships, you need to be mindful of how your leadership style will be perceived by customers and clients. In customer-focused businesses, employees will be the face of the organisation. If staff look as if they would rather be elsewhere, are not engaged, or are not happy – this will reflect badly on your business reputation. If you have staff interacting with customers on a regular basis, ensure that you iterate the importance of a positive external reputation. It is also important to give them a reason to be positive when interacting with the public, whether this be an employee rewards program, or simply positive reminders in the workplace.
What do you think?
Do you believe that the leadership style of one person can impact the success of a business? I’d love to hear from people both for and against this topic, and delve deeper into the conversation. Comment your views below to take part.
This article was written by Laura Hutton on behalf of the Australian Institute of Business. All opinions are that of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of AIB.