As another year opens, I hope that yours is filled with promise and good things to come.  If you’re a manager or supervisor, I hope that you and your employees will create a year in which, together, you produce stellar results for your organization, your department, your team, and yourselves.

But let’s not just hope you knock one out of the park; let’s be sure that it happens. This month, let’s focus on how you treat the employees who report to you.
I began thinking about this because last year I celebrated my 20th year as the owner of Creative Training Solutions.  Reflecting on those two decades, it occurred to me that if my last boss had allowed me to use my strengths, I’d still be working for that corporation, as a dedicated, productive contributor. Since he didn’t, I have been a dedicated, productive contributor to my own company, instead!

It’s widely known that the most common reason employees leave a job is a poor relationship with their direct supervisors. Yet some bosses continue to abuse (and lose) their employees by demeaning or even abusing these important human resources. Why? In a misguided belief that fear motivates?!  News flash: Fear only manipulates, discourages, and destroys. And, as my own case demonstrates, it leads to high turnover.

So if you suspect some of your best people may be “seeking other opportunities,” take an honest look at whether you are guilty of any of the following:
• Demanding (or having your secretary demand) that your employees drop what they’re going and dash to your office immediately
• Ordering them to work unnecessary overtime on a mere whim or in anger or in an irrational effort to show that you are working hard
• Reprimanding employees publicly or blaming them when you should accept responsibility for a problem
• Procrastinating, preventing employees from taking action or completing a task while they wait for your decision or involvement
• Demanding obscure, irrelevant details from your employees, so that they look uninformed and feel inadequate
• Denying them accessibility, with comments such as, “Don’t bother me with that now,” or “I’m too busy for you.”
• Being abrupt or preoccupied when employees attempt to talk to you, perhaps continuing to do some unrelated activity or failing to even look at them
• Killing your employees’ ideas (and spirit) with,
• “We’ve always done it this way!”
• “That’s not your problem or your job.”
• “That’s not practical now.”
• “Where did you ever get that idea?”
• “We don’t have time to think about that now.”

Do you feel you are occasionally guilty of some of these behaviors, but you don’t think they’re causing problems?  You may be right, but read next month’s “Managing Smart” to be sure!

If your organization would like a keynote speech or training program
on this or other topics, contact Jeanne Baer at  (402) 475-1127 or
visit me on the web at
Copyright 2011 Creative Training Solutions