leadership behaviors that lose employee trust and respect

leadership behaviors that lose employee trust and respect

It’s uncomfortable for leaders to say, “I want to go over there, and I’m going to be responsible for getting us over there, and no one has ever gone over there, and I’m not sure how to get over there, but let’s go,” according to Seth Godin, one of my favorite leadership experts. We must win the confidence of our followers if we are to realize our objectives.

Since our ability to advance depends so much on others, it’s critical to understand the actions that may turn off and annoy your supporters. Here are the nine most divisive, harmful actions that leaders may take.


1. Being untrue.

True leaders hold fast to their convictions. Bill George, a professor at Harvard Business School and authority on authentic leadership, claims that in the face of adversity, authentic leaders stick to their principles and goals.

They refuse to budge just because it would be simple to do so. Because they act from a position of complete honesty, they can be relied upon to always present themselves in the same manner.

When executives are acting dishonestly, employees can tell.

2. False promises

When dangling carrots to entice workers, managers must exercise caution. Employees have every right to anticipate a leader’s commitment to a pledge.

Leaders frequently share thoughts in the midst of a discussion without understanding that their subordinates are listening intently.

What Got You Here Won’t Get You There by Marshall Goldsmith shows that when managers offer advice or suggestions, staff interprets them as orders or promises.

No matter how big or small, breaking a promise will be seen as a betrayal of employees’ confidence.

3. Vagueness.

When providing direction to staff, specificity is required.

Ambiguity indicates two things: 1) a lack of direction clarity and 2) secrecy.

These two impressions foster suspicion and mistrust.

Your ability to communicate your vision and direction clearly will speed up the engagement of others.


4. One-way communication

Information is used to move via a carefully controlled funnel at the top of old hierarchical companies. Employees simply carried out their duties and received the precise information that management desired.

Employees today have a strong voice. They have the freedom to share their thoughts and views in societies that are healthy. Employees want to be heard and receive insightful input.

A culture of two-way communication can be developed in a variety of ways, for as by routinely asking for anonymous opinion and discussing it in Town Hall meetings. Your staff is your most valuable source of information on what is going on in your company.

5. Ego-driven leadership and personal ambitions.

To endure setbacks and hostility, leaders need thick skin. Due to the skeptics who doubt their talents and would enjoy seeing them fail, they also need tremendous self-confidence.

The greater interest of the organization must, however, come before personal agendas for leaders, who must leave their egos at the door. Because it necessitates a great deal of self-awareness and honesty about personal motivation, this behavior may be among the hardest to break.

6. Anger.

Uncontrolled fury has no place in leadership. It communicates fear, disdain, a lack of control, and a lack of consideration for the people who are the target.

It is true that the leadership path is accompanied by significant and perhaps crippling stresses. However, it is not our employees’ duty to serve as our emotional support systems, so it is crucial to look for healthy alternatives and supportive communities to vent or express our problems.

7. Refusing to empower or delegate.

It takes a team to be a leader. Employees that join your company and share your vision contribute knowledge and abilities that can further your plan. Given that you may not always get your way, it might be challenging to give up control.

However, in a growing firm, even a team of leaders cannot finish every duty. You may maintain focus on what you do best and what you love the most by delegating well.

Not only can delegation increase your productivity and reduce duplication inside your company, it also demonstrates to your staff that you have faith in them. Employees want to feel like they are contributing and having an influence. They seek a sense of empowerment and necessity.

8. A superiority complex or a lack of gratitude.

Employees have quite different perspectives of their managers and the C-level community than they do of themselves.

Even when leaders don’t try to do so, there is a clear distinction between the leadership and the rest of the organization in business.

We frequently lose touch with our workforce as our companies expand. When developing tactics for appreciation, we must be deliberate. The organization functions best as a whole, thus we must continually re-recruit our personnel in-house to maintain everyone’s engagement through thankfulness and appreciation.

9. Picking sides.

Favoritism is one of the most depressing leadership traits. Every organization has “linchpins” who play a crucial role in keeping it together, but in general, businesses should strive to be more “process-centric” than “hero-centric.”

The remaining employees may start to feel that they are expendable when organizations center their attention on a small number of heroes. Companies must engage in the development of systems to ensure that there is no impact on operations if key personnel depart in order to reduce dependence on heroes.

To sum up.

Every leader will unavoidably exhibit one or more of these traits at some point during their leadership. After all, leadership is challenging and we are all only human.

Self-awareness is the most crucial component of leadership enhancement that cannot be overlooked. We will be better able to identify these harmful practices and change them so that we can create the best organizations and have the best lives if we are more self-aware.