Despite coaching many different businesses at many different stages of operation, there is one question that stays the same, “How do I get my team to be more responsible?”
It can be tempting to point the finger at the team here, and I’ll admit I normally get a list of why certain team members are anything but responsible. But what we can often forget as leaders is that building a culture of responsibility starts with us, not our team.
So how do you ensure you encourage responsibility and not accidentally enable irresponsibility? Here are the top four tips I share with my clients that make the most difference in their businesses.
1. Establish clear roles and responsibilities
The skills, experience and performance of your team determine the success of your business. You need them to be performing at their best so your organisation can be performing at its best.
In order for people to know what part they play in the business it is critical to ensure they first know what their role is and what they are responsible for. It’s about setting clear expectations up front, openly and honestly and gaining confirmation from them that they understand and have clarity around their role and responsibilities.
2. Lead by example
We’ve spoken a lot over the last couple of months about being the leader your team needs you to be. Good leaders must lead by example. By walking your talk, you become a person others want to follow. When leaders say one thing, but do another, they erode trust – a critical element of productive leadership.
If you want your team to be more responsible, be more responsible yourself. Act how you want them to act. Lead from the front and be the ultimate example.
3. Empower your staff
Don’t just allow your employees to make decisions, expect them to. To build a culture of responsibility your team needs independence and empowerment. They also need your trust and approval to do this even if this means making some mistakes.
If you are signing off on every little decision or micromanaging every task then you are not only wasting your time and limiting their productivity, you are enabling them to continue with this behaviour and that helps no one.
4. Reward employees who step up
For those employees who do step up and show a level of responsibility, praise and reward them in front of the whole team and give very clear examples of the actions you want others to emulate. We all seek approval and recognition so ensure you are enforcing and encouraging the right behaviour in your team by rewarding it.
What is one step you can start today to help empower your team?