Great managers also need to be great leaders. A well-managed workspace may result in better efficiency, but it takes an inspiring leader to get the most out of your staff and ensure they stay with you for the long haul. As staffing agency managers, we need to keep this constantly in our mind as we go about running our businesses, especially at a time when many businesses are struggling to retain their staff.
To help you succeed in that endeavor, here are seven leadership tips you can begin using right away to help your staffing agency become the best it can possibly be.
Find the Right People
It all starts with the people you hire. Make sure that they’re a good fit for your agency and have the necessary drive to succeed. While many business managers will have their own opinions on how you can identify the right applicants, sometimes the simplest bit of advice is the best.
That advice is to focus on attitude first. An applicant with a good attitude should have a desire to learn and succeed and a willingness to take criticism and accept their mistakes. A hiring strategy that focuses on attitude first and training second will have far better staff retention, engagement, and loyalty.
Build on Strengths, Not Weaknesses
There is a long-standing belief among some managers that weaknesses are something to be worked on. For instance, a staff member that works well in back-office work but struggles with customer-facing roles might need more training in the latter. While managers should try to encourage staff members to expand their comfort zone, focusing too much on weaknesses instead of strengths can have a detrimental effect in the long run.
Instead, identify the individual strengths in each of your staff and position them to play to those strengths. This creates a more well-rounded team with varying skills that can be employed as needed. It also results in a more satisfied and comfortable workforce.
Listen Before Speaking
Communication is a two-way street. Good leaders understand this and will seek first to listen to their people before speaking. Managers who don’t give their staff a chance to voice their opinion or share their side of a story are neither liked nor respected. Listen to your staff and encourage them to speak their mind. You’ll get a lot more out of them from both a professional and personal standpoint with this approach.
Focus on Technology
There are a host of technologies out there that can make you a better manager and leader. For instance, Timerack’s time and attendance systems can make it significantly easier to track the comings and goings of your staff. But there are also plenty of other tools you can use to manage your team more efficiently, such as instant chat applications, project management systems, or online training modules.
COATS Staffing Software can manage all your daily operations. COATS partners with vendors that are most sought after, including Timerack, and brings staffing technology tools together to be easily accessed and used from one platform.
Digitization has taken over much of the office experience and staff are beginning to expect it as a matter of course. By embracing technology, you’re not only making your own job easier, but you’re also making your team members’ jobs easier. Easier coordination and organization results in less burnout and greater staff retention
Be a Positive Role Model
If you want the best from your staff, then you need to set a good example. Being a positive role model by practicing what you preach is one of the best things you can do to motivate your staff. Be willing to acknowledge your mistakes and listen to feedback while constantly seeking to improve yourself.
This also extends to having a positive outlook toward the mental well-being of your staff. Sometimes the stress of work can build up and be compounded by personal difficulties. Learn to recognize when a team member is struggling and offer your support in whatever way you can. Encourage the rest of your team to also be there for one another in difficult times.
Have a Clear Vision of Your Goals
Being able to lead a team effectively requires first having a clear strategy. Know what you’re trying to achieve and how you plan to achieve it. Have a list of both short-term and long-term goals that you regularly revise as needed. With a clear strategy, you can more effectively delegate to your team, assign roles, and handle problems as they arise. This is what sets great leaders apart from middling leaders: they know what they want and aren’t put off by the challenges that stand in their way.
Managing a team isn’t always easy, especially when it’s a diverse one like you’ll find in any staffing agency. Make an effort to be a good leader as well as a good manager that looks after the best interests of your team. When your staff sees that you’re someone they can depend on, they’ll be more likely to stick around when things get tough.