With the business environment ever-evolving, how do you motivate, connect with, and inspire your team in the best, most effective way possible? While it’s always important to maintain your role as a leader, it’s also important to remain relatable to your employees, to practice compassion, and be someone they will be proud to work for and with.

CEO on the top of a mountain

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For leaders, old and new, there are practical tips to implement in your daily routine to make you the best leader possible. Here are six practical tips that can be applied to a myriad of environments to help you lead and lead great.

Emphasize the why

When you outline why a project, assignment, client, etc., is so important, it helps gain buy-in from your team. It can motivate a team member to finish a project in a day as opposed to dragging it out over a few weeks. Letting them in on your rationale as well as your expectations helps team members feel they’re more valued.

Practice compassion

When a mishap occurs, and it will, exercise compassion and empathy before coming down on your employee or jumping to conclusions. You should be hard on results, but soft on the person giving those results to you; understand what went wrong and how best to help that individual from making the same mistake again.

Skill vs. Will

Underperformance usually comes from one of two places: a lack of skill or a lack of will. Taking time to uncover and understand the difference between the two in relation to a certain employee’s underperformance is key to fixing the problem. Skill gaps are easy to close with the proper coaching, training, and support, while will gaps are more difficult to close and require more digging into where your employees motivation lie.

Family first

Family issues are often unavoidable when managing a group of people, and allowing your team to make it their number one priority in dire times is key to performance. If they aren’t able attend to personal issues, performance will most likely suffer, and they’ll feel like their personal lives don’t matter outside of the work environment. They do, and let them know that.

Communicate frequently

While we all get caught up in our own daily tasks, personal lives, and the like, it’s important to make your team feel like they aren’t forgotten. Don’t wait for a quarterly or annual review to give feedback on performance, or even worse, for your team member to ask for it. Stay ahead of the ball, and regularly check-in with your staff to help them stay motivated, productive, and heard.

Trust your team

Experience has shown that staff will go above and beyond to keep an employer or managers trust, so give them all of it. Meddling in the minutiae of what your team is up to instead of giving them the tools and support they need tends to produce mixed results. So trust your staff, and they will produce great results.