When web developer Madalyn Parker took two days of sick leave to tend to her mental health, she emailed her colleagues letting them know where she'd be.
To Madalyn's surprise, the CEO of her company, Ben Congleton, responded to her email with what can only be described as an unfortunately surprising response.
If you manage people, take note! You have choices in life.
You can say and do things that will cause your people to respect and even adore you, or you can be the kind of boss who employees loathe.
You can inspire your people, or you can fail them.
You can be a kind and decent person, or you can suck.
The thing I learned while managing restaurants for almost a decade was that it's surprisingly easy to earn the respect of your people:
- Treat them with dignity and respect.
- Work at least as hard as they do.
- Remember that they are human beings with complex lives and a myriad of health and family issues that don't always align to your business goals.
- Get to know your employees as people. Know the names of their spouses and children. Learn something about their culture and traditions. Know how they spend their free time.
- Talk to them about their future plans, even if those plans may be with another company. Invest in them as human beings.
- Say hello and goodbye to as many employees as you can, every day that you can.
- Never respond in anger. Always walk away from a heated situation until all parties are calm.
- Celebrate your employee's success whenever possible while always downplaying your own. The boss who brags about his or her success and accomplishments sucks. The best way for a boss to shine is for his or her people to shine.