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What makes a great boss?

What makes a really great boss?
I have been so lucky throughout my career to have had some really great bosses. Some, not so great but for the most part, I consider myself one of the lucky ones. Why were they great? My bosses were great because:
  • They cared about the right things, in the right way, and at the right time
  • They chose leadership for the right reason
What does it mean to care about the right things? Caring for the right things means they gave their attention to:  
  • The business
  • Their self development
  • Their team of direct reports
  • The entire workforce

I’ve had leaders that gave their attention to these things when the timing was right. They had the foresight to move into action on the right things at the right time. This list is in no particular order because great leaders understand that all are important and imperative to the business. Great leaders also understand that priorities shift and what is important today may be different tomorrow.

When caring for the business, a great leader knows:
  • When a decision needs to be made
  • When to walk away
  • When to consult others
  • The importance of the bottom line
  • How to improve the bottom line
When caring for themselves and their own self-development, a great leader knows:
  • Continued learning is crucial
  • They must be authentic and genuine
  • They must be honest and transparent
  • They must understand what it means to be self-aware
  • They understand that their ability to listen will provide them great insight
When caring for their team of direct reports, a great leaders knows:
  • When their team is tired or exhausted
  • When their team is energized 
  • When their team needs to be left to do they job they were entrusted to do
  • When their team needs their leaders to step in and remove the roadblock
When caring for their entire workforce, a great leaders knows:
  • We all learn differently
  • How to read the room and communicate accordingly
  • When it is time to listen 
  • When it is time to act

Being a great boss does not come without its challenges and without work. I would like to give a shout out to all the great bosses out there and especially to the bosses that I have been so fortunate to have been part of their team.

If you want to be a great boss, first ask yourself why? If you are doing it for financial reasons, then don’t lead people. If you truly want to lead people, do the work cuz it ain’t easy!