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How to Navigate the Employee/Boss Situation Properly
  • 26 January 2017
  • Eric Michaels

How to Navigate the Employee/Boss Situation Properly

Are you the boss first and an employee second, or vice versa? As a small business owner who puts in long hours and makes a lot of the big company decisions, you can often find yourself in a tricky position. After all, it can be difficult for you to evaluate how well you lead your team. And you might have a hard time being objective about your own performance as an employee. Since you set the tone for your staff, you cannot ignore the performance aspect of your business. Here are some tips on how to navigate the employee/boss situation and rate yourself objectively.

Gather data

Business owners need to have an evaluation system in place for their employees. Every quarter, you should run a report tracking the number of sales, leads, projects completed, and any other relevant data for each staff member. Over the first year or so, you will gain an idea of what constitutes a high performance for the job in question, but you have to start by collecting information for measurable entities.

Log yourself into the system as you would any other employee. When the time comes to look over the numbers, you can evaluate yourself in the same manner by which you evaluate your team members.

Compare your work against the work your employees produce

Once you have information about every employee's performance, you can see how you fared compared to the rest of the team. Look with objective eyes at how you did in the last few quarters. If you find yourself trailing others in sales or efficiency, you may want to consider putting someone else in the role in question. After all, great leaders are not always great employees or great salespeople.

For the most objective look at your performance as an employee, you should run reports on everyone in your company without names attached and evaluate each performance based on the statistics alone. Numbers do not lie.

Put other employees in charge

Once you have hired a few staff members, you will find opportunities to delegate your responsibilities for certain projects. The next time you see an opportunity for an employee to take charge, you could agree to work under him or her on this particular task. Once your team completes the project, you should ask for honest feedback about how you did and whether your work matched the effort of others involved.

Some employees may feel somewhat uncomfortable evaluating their bosses, but a savvy professional should be able to take on the challenge. Just be sure to take any constructive criticism you receive in stride, so that your employee remains honest and open if you ask for feedback again. Sacrificing your ego in this way could inspire your employees to spend time evaluating their own work.

Peer reviews

While feedback from a manager you put in charge of a task is helpful, it is also important to hear from other employees who work on a particular project with you. After all, your working style may leave staff members with different impressions. If you ask for honest feedback about how it felt working side-by-side with you, there is a chance you can truly learn about your performance on the job.

Again, anonymous feedback may be the only effective option if you sense that your employees are hesitant to offer constructive criticism. In this scenario, you could provide your employees with brief polls and multiple choice questions that do not expose anyone's identity. Either way, asking for feedback from your "peers" on a project will never hurt. In the best-case scenario, you will receive valuable information about how you work.

The employee/boss situation in a company can present you with a variety of challenges. Instead of taking your own expertise for granted, you should find out if you are worthy of the salary you pay yourself. This insight will help you to run your company in a better, more efficient manner.

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