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The true test of a leader is in how well he manages the many moving components of his business. It can be equated to juggling. Every leader has different strengths and weaknesses, and managing everything is seldom easy. However, if you can master the following people skills and money management techniques, you’ll have a leg up in your business, with your team, and in life.
The cost of not bettering yourself as a leader can be significant. It’s estimated that 32% of employee turnover is due to leadership issues. Top that with money management issues, and you’ve got a great deal of business trouble. Use the following tips to give your management style an upgrade.
1. Seek personal alignment before talking with employees and team members.
We’ve all worked with that one person or had that one boss who is always changing their minds on what they actually want — for the company’s overarching strategy, the colors on the new brochure or how they want meetings to go. Over time, their indecisiveness changes how we view them. Rather than the leader of the pack, it became easier than ever to write them off as inconsistent.
Yuri Kruman offers compelling advice on how to stand your ground and have alignment in how you show up at work and in life in his book, Be Your Own Commander in Chief. Kruman is an award-winning Chief People Officer who specializes in what millennials really want in the workplace. In his book, he talks about the “Four Pillars of ‘Mastering the Talk.’”
“The whole concept is that there needs to be alignment in all the conversations you have — conversations with others, conversations with your body (your health and wellness), conversations with yourself, and with G-d, the Universe, or your spiritual connection,” Kruman explained. “But very few people focus on all four at once, which is what leads to crises. You’ll be far more effective of a leader if you keep up all four conversations consistently — and your team will respect you all the more for it.”
2. Monitor business expenses on the ROI scale.
Last year was tremendously hard for many businesses, meaning that unnecessary expenses were the first to go. Now that life is somewhat returning to normal, it may be worth another glance at your business expenses. Perhaps you cut back too much, and need to allocate more money to bring on new contractors, employees or virtual assistants to get your business back up and running. Or, perhaps you spent too much to prepare for the unknown.
For each expense on your list, calculate its ROI. This shouldn’t just be a mere consideration of, “Yes, we need this, let’s leave it.” ROI means maximizing the return on investment that you get. For example, if you have been using one PR agency consistently and you believe the ROI is great, try cranking out the numbers for going with that new PR intern who could help you just as much. Much of this is guesswork, but the best managers know how their money is being spent and will stretch a dollar to the best of their abilities.
3. Think of your team members like you’d think of chess pieces.
Each team member you work with has their own ROI — and that comes down to how they’re maximizing their talents and abilities. An article in the Harvard Business Review by Marcus Buckingham titled What Great Managers Do equates people management to a game of chess. No two employees are the same. Each has their own set of strengths and weaknesses, ways they learn best, ways they’re most motivated, and how they work with and inspire the rest of the team.
“In chess, each type of piece moves in a different way, and you can’t play if you don’t know how each piece moves,” Buckingham writes. “More important, you won’t win if you don’t think carefully about how you move the pieces. Great managers know and value the unique abilities and even the eccentricities of their employees, and they learn how best to integrate them into a coordinated plan of attack.” Take the time to get to know your employees and how they work together, so you can truly understand how to manage them for their utmost happiness and the overarching success of the company.
Related: The Truth About Money Management
4. Address underlying money blocks or issues in your perception of money.
The way you view money as the manager of your business has an undue influence on your business’ cash flow. What many managers fail to acknowledge is how much this is the case — and it doesn’t come down to how much money is going in and out of your business, but rather how you’re viewing this money. Chad Willardson is the author of Stress-Free Money: Overcome These Seven Obstacles to Find Financial Freedom, which details how to make your money work for you, while also changing how you view money.
“Making money work for you is one of the most powerful ways to befriend money,” explains Willardson. “We are used to viewing money from the vantage point of lack, but the truth is, there are many ways to achieve financial freedom while clearing up your money consciousness. Money can be dealt with in a neutral manner, far from the dangers of guilt or greed.”
Overhauling how you view money will help you in making financial decisions, pricing products and services, and dictating salaries and benefits for your employees.
Each of these powerful techniques can change the course of how you manage your business for the better. Remember that business is about people, and business is done for the sake of money. Managing both is how you’ll win.