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How to tackle inefficient leadership

Leadership isn’t easy and sometimes it goes awry. But you can always get it back on track – by talking.

The way a leader leads can make or break a business. A recent Investors in People survey found that more than 1 in 10 employees struggle to find anything to admire in their bosses, while almost 1 in 5 don’t feel motivated by their managers. Whether it’s an entrepreneur with a gung-ho spirit, or a family business owner set in her ways, for every good leader there’s a leader that makes things harder.

Good leadership should be people-led, encouraging and supportive. If managers don’t focus on building relationships with their teams and empowering them to achieve, it can impact on productivity and performance, but also on an individual’s self esteem, confidence and sense of commitment. It can affect teamwork, cohesion and collaboration and – if left to fester – it can influence how an organisation is perceived by customers, in turn affecting that company’s survival.

Where does inefficient management come from?

A leader’s individual personality can play a part in inefficient management, but it won’t be the only cause. Many managers are promoted through the ranks without any appropriate leadership training. A lot of managers are also overstretched and don’t feel they can give people management the time or capacity it needs.

Inefficient managers are usually good people with good intentions. In fact a lot of inefficiencies can stem from a lack of confidence and trust in their own abilities, which leaders pass on to their teams. They impose limitations without realising, because they are worried about what will happen if they let go.