Be a Better Boss - Practical Ideas to Help You Better Lead

Kara Powell | Oct 23, 2012

So last week was apparently “Boss Appreciation Day” (I know, I know, some of you are saying, “But every day is ‘Boss Appreciation Day’ since you have to do what they request every day). The Harvard Business Review ran an interesting blog post on how bosses can be better leaders.

Some fascinating research nuggets from the blog:

  • Close to 70% say they’d be happier at work if they got along better with their bosses. That breaks down equally among men and women, but rises to an astonishing 80% among workers in their 20s and 30s.
  • Close to 60% say they’d do a better job if they got along better with their bosses.

Since getting along with your boss is a key factor in job performance and longevity, those of us who supervise others (whether they be volunteers or paid staff) can heed some of the post’s suggestions:

1. Communicate what you stand for you and who you are through regular staff meetings and e.mails. Welcome your team into a strong communication loop.

2. Be positive and encouraging. Even when you’re correcting someone, try to point out something they’ve done correctly.

3. Be honest and follow through on what you’ve said you’re going to do.

4. Set goals and put them in writing so that all employees know what is expected of them.

5. Show support of employees’ career development and growth.

6. Reward for a job well done.

One piece that we as a team are working on at FYI is making sure we all understand how our various roles fit with our purpose, strategy, and annual goals. I want Haley to know how the catering she’s ordering relates to Sticky Faith. I want Daniel to understand how the flyer he’s creating will make a difference in cities through our Urban Youth Ministry Certificate.

I suppose that falls under #4 of setting goals.

What are you working on with your own teams?

Kara Powell

Dr. Kara Powell is the Executive Director of the Fuller Youth Institute (FYI), a faculty member at Fuller Theological Seminary, and Fuller's Chief of Leadership Formation. Named by Christianity Today as one of “50 Women You Should Know,” Kara serves as a Youth and Family Strategist for Orange, and also speaks regularly at parenting and leadership conferences. Kara is the author or coauthor of a number of books, including Growing Young, Growing With, The Sticky Faith Guide for Your Family, Sticky Faith Curriculum, Can I Ask That?, Deep Justice Journeys, Deep Justice in a Broken World, Deep Ministry in a Shallow World, and the Good Sex Youth Ministry Curriculum. Kara lives with her husband Dave and their three children, Nathan, Krista, and Jessica, in Southern California.


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