I was sitting in a meeting one day talking about parenting style and I realized that the topic was applicable for small businesses. Different types of managing styles are a lot like different parenting styles. The three styles they talked about, that want to talk about in terms of business are:
1 Love and Connection: Knowing what motivates your employees and ensuring that they have a sense of connection to you. We know these types of small business owners, and people who choose this style generally have a lack of discipline. They feel that if they’re loving and connected enough, provide enough days off, enough pay, recognize birthdays and anniversaries, then their employees will give them what they need. Sometimes it works and sometimes employees still walk away. Sometimes people take advantage of you or they are turning into being a needy and whiny person who is manipulating you to see what they can get away with.
2 Discipline & Punishment: Employees who show up on time, leave on time, do exactly what’s asked of them and they do so because you ask them to. They behave because you ask them to behave and the advantage of that is that the work gets done and things run like a well-oiled machine. The downside to that is that people don’t feel they have a personal investment in their work. There is no pride in their work because there’s no personal pride and they may also become a whiny employee who whines when they aren’t told exactly what to do. They may feel that you didn’t set them up for success because you didn’t give them every detail. This can lead to micromanaging and that’s not a position you want to find yourself in.
3 Avoidance & Neglect, which I like to call the overwhelmed owner. Their discipline style is inconsistent, they lack follow through, and they avoid when they don’t know what to do. This style of management makes employees hyper compensate and take over everything, or employees who will be too relaxed. This is a common style for small business owners because of how much is on our plates at any give moment.
You may be one or more of these but once you recognize what your style is as a default. Are you avoiding being a particular style? Because if so, that might be leaving a void in the way you manage. Lift your head and connect with the business and the people you employee; you created the business because you had a plan and vision. Therefore, it’s vital that you take an active role in ensuring that the vision is stewarded into growth.