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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Leadership: The Magic Of Feedback

Many organizations are over managed. Key executives believe in the process of micro managing subordinates and overseeing all activities.

What this business model does is create a lot of busy work but essentially is much less productive.

A real leader understands the importance of feedback. While many shy away from feedback because it can show them things about themselves they don't want to see, it is a very vital part of effective leadership. You can consider leadership as the mirror that lets you see the job you are doing and have done. But don't look at is as judgment, look instead at feedback as a way to better the path towards your eventual goal.

You should be open to regular feedback sessions. Some try to allow feedback on the project at bi-weekly or monthly intervals. That is too long of a time period to wait for something that may need to be addressed much sooner. Often employees are waiting for a chance to talk more about the project and get some response to what they are doing to make sure they are doing the right thing. As a manager you should at the least have weekly meetings to keep up with the progress your group is making, and also help them look at the things they have yet to accomplish and prioritize the list. You may also get some input on better ways to do things from those who have been in the midst of it. In addition to group meetings, you should also offer individual meetings to group members.

You need to always know what your team is doing and that they are working towards the group objective. After all, you are the leader. In the end this project is your responsibility and if things go wrong, you are going to be the one who has to take the blame. You should be able to spot if performance is slipping anywhere in your team and deal with that problem quickly. You need to discover if they just don't want to do the job, or if they are having a problem. That can be done through asking them a lot of open-ended questions so they will eventually let you know the real hold up.

Make sure your group members know you are behind them. Everyone can use a little encouragement once in a while. But also make sure they know you expect to see results. At the end of your meetings, always leave them knowing when the next meeting is going to be. This sets them up to know that they will be expected to show more progress in a certain time period

You need to discipline yourself as a leader to make sure not to become complacent. This is something that happens to many leaders. They after a while become indifferent to the project and don't keep as close an eye on things as they should. This is a recipe for disaster and shows poor leadership to boot. You must meet every week with the group members and always make a list of their goals, assuring they are making progress towards those goals. If you neglect your group members, they may well start to neglect the work they are supposed to be getting done.

About the Author

Harald Anderson is the co-founder of www.artinspires.com a leading online motivational posters gallery. His goal in life is to become the kind of person his dog thinks he is.

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