Do your employees hate you? That’s just bad business
Tough-talking Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz sure knows how to get the media’s attention. Virtually every quip she’s ever uttered — including her famous “Tell me why I shouldn’t fire the whole lot of you” line — has been happily devoured and dissected by reporters looking for juicy quotes.
It makes for a great story, but you’ve got to wonder what it’s like to work for her.
A recent article from Entrepreneur.com suggests that bosses like Bartz might want to lighten up — not just because it’s good for office morale, but it may also boost their company’s bottom line.
Writes author Nancy Mann Jackson:
“Quite simply, if employees like and respect you, they’re more invested in your company and interested in its success. They’re willing to work harder and give more. But if they don’t care about you, they don’t care about your company.”
Not exactly rocket-science, but it’s an idea worth considering, especially in today’s morale-crushing economic times. Since the recession kicked into high gear last year, there’s been no shortage of reports warning about undermotivated, overworked employees struggling to keep up with growing workloads while worrying about losing their jobs.
But forward-looking leaders would do well to nurture office relationships, particularly during tough times.
“This is when managers typically go into ‘avoidance mode,’ and as a result productivity goes down and morale goes down,” said Mark Murphy, CEO of Leadership IQ, in an interview with Reuters.
The better approach, he says, is to give employees a sense of purpose. Just don’t fall into a coddling trap. In research to be published in his forthcoming book, Hundred Percenters: Challenge your employees to give it their all and they’ll give you even more, Murphy found that most employees would prefer a boss that pushes them to achieve their full potential instead of one whose sole concern is making them happy.
Maybe Bartz is on to something…
Do you think being liked by your employees is good for business, or do bosses have to be the bad guy? Tell us what you think below.