3 Unorthodox Paths to Becoming a Better Boss
Free Book Preview: Unstoppable
All business owners want to be good bosses. But, the road between desire and reality is not easy to traverse. Not everybody can be a good boss and far fewer become truly successful bosses. As somebody who is running the show, you must have a finger on the pulse of your employees. Knowing what they want from you is the first step towards being an inspiring leader. For example, 90% of employees expect their bosses to be honest, while a good 76% want them to be genuine.
The question is – How do you come good on employee expectations?
The answer is simple. You will have to work hard at it.
While you might think leadership comes naturally to some people, the truth is every person aspiring to be a leader needs to keep building his/her leadership skills. It is a never ending process. There are two critical stages of this process:
You first learn specific skill sets and you then implement this learning.
You can read management books or spend hours attending relevant lectures that impart the necessary skills that can help you lead from the front; or you could also try out a few unconventional ways of becoming a better boss. They are fun, interesting and you will enjoy giving them a try:
1. Amateur theater
“What’s that? Theater! You must be joking.”
No, it’s not a joke. Taking up theater as a hobby is a great way of boosting your confidence levels. What you are essentially doing is getting up there and “presenting an idea” to your audience. Their reception depends on your performance. As can be imagined, you need truckloads of self-discipline and self-motivation to perform in a way such that your idea makes an impression on your target audience.
If you learn how to motivate yourself, you will know how to motivate your employees. What’s more, the fact that you’ve learnt to have a stage presence means you can use this learning while giving those “talks” exhorting your employees to perform better.
2. Play video games
If you want to become a better leader, there is nothing better than spending a few hours every day playing video games.
Really, video games? Yes, video games.
There are plenty of benefits of playing video games from the leadership skills point of view. Think about it. Many games expect players to not only think about their immediate objectives but also their long-term goals. They make you take strategic decisions that are aligned with your short and long term objectives; this is something that every leader is expected to do in a challenging business environment as well!
Multiplayer games where you are a part of a team or leading a team help you hone your team management skills and learn how to encourage cooperation between various team members. There are plenty of video games available on the market; find and play games that will help improve your leadership skills in some way or form.
3. Love the great outdoors
Get away from it all and make it a point to go hiking, camping, fishing or just spend time alone in the great outdoors. There are plenty of life lessons you can learn when you do this and many of them will help you become a better boss.
When you are alone, surrounded by the nature in all its glory, your mind will be more attuned to look inwards. You are in a position to identify your faults, recognize your strengths and chart a course correction, if needed.
Escaping your regular work environment can help you understand yourself better and whether you are on the right track, as far as your professional goals are concerned. You can sort things out in your head in a stress-free manner. That helps you take the right decisions and perform your role of a leader with renewed vigor.
The great thing about being a boss is that you don’t have to ask anybody for a leave. If you think you need to take a break and it will help improve your leadership skills, take it.
At first glance, these methods might seem like a bit of a stretch, but chew on them a bit and you’ll find they are not such a bad idea after all. No harm in giving them a try.
Related: The 5 Secrets of Great Bosses