title:Being a Great Boss author:Mike Shannon source_url:http://www.articlecity.com/articles/business_and_finance/article_3109.shtml date_saved:2007-07-25 12:30:06 category:business_and_finance article:

Are you one of those bosses that people just love to hate? Maybe successful, maybe very intelligent, maybe organized and moving forward but just can’t get along with people. Communication and other people skills are as important to the success of your business as your talent, knowledge and entrepreneurial drive. After all, you cannot do it all by yourself and you need good people.
I remember being a very arrogant and egotistical program director back in the mid 1970’s when my boss called me into the office and flat out told me “Mike, you got talent and drive but you need to learn some diplomacy”. I’ll never forget that meeting. This mentor taught me things like no matter how great my idea was it was probably going nowhere if I couldn’t convince, persuade or lead people to buy into it. I learned that very few people want to negotiate with a bull-head. And if they do because they must then they will resent it for a long long time. Some will even look for the opportunity for payback. I relearned things that were taught to me in elementary school. Things like “you attract more bees with honey than vinegar”. As a 7 year old the key word there was bees so who cared, right? As a businessman the key word had become attract. Same sentence different meaning. Things like “smile and people will smile back at you” or “extend your hand and the other person will shake it”.
It doesn’t take a lot of extra effort to be a nice boss. As a matter of fact it’s a whole lot easier to be nice than it is to be a hard-ass. And the payoff is so great in a happy and productive workforce that I can’t reason why some bosses still act in a totalitarian, dictatorial way. How do your people perceive you? I’m not talking about being a wimp and saying yes to every unreasonable demand an employee makes. I’m talking about listening, caring, empathy, leadership and, oh yes?diplomacy.

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