Those in leadership positions represent your company to customers and internal staff members, so they have a great deal of direct impact on your company’s bottom line. Whether you’re considering promoting an employee to a management position or hiring externally for a leadership position, it’s important to create a strategy that allows you to evaluate your candidates to ensure they’ll lead your team to success.
According to a Gallup study, one in two employees have left their job to get away from their manager at some point in their career. Additionally, only 35% of managers are engaged, costing businesses $319 billion to $398 billion annually.
Employees supervised by highly engaged leadership teams are 39% more likely to be engaged themselves, so your bottom line and your employee productivity hinges on the management you select.
Make sure you’re choosing the right managers to lead your team with these pointers.
What makes a great leader?
Holding a leadership position is not an easy job by any means, and it takes a certain individual with particular qualities to keep your staff motivated. When hiring for your leadership positions, look for an individual who:
- welcomes feedback. Growth happens when feedback is given, so individuals that desire feedback know that it will help them become better. Additionally, your managers must be comfortable with giving feedback, as well, to make sure their direct reports are progressing.
- has an engaging personality. Those in leadership positions often have to communicate with folks at every level, so their personalities should be warm and engaging.
- has a proven record of development. Even if they’ve never managed individuals before, they need to be able to showcase their journey and how they’ve improved along the way, through continuing education, professional development, or other means of career progression.
- is encouraging and motivating. You want your employees to be influenced by a positive, driven individual, not someone who solely focused on running a tight ship. This type of person helps develop employees through their strengths and encourages them to improve on their weaknesses, gives praise often and with sincerity, and adds to the overall company culture.
- can show empathy. Leaders need to have emotional intelligence and show empathy to their staff when necessary, because things don’t always go as planned. This doesn’t take away from their ability to be assertive, but it helps them create an environment of trust with their employees.
- is not always right. Just because an individual is in a leadership position, doesn’t mean they’re always right. Hire a leader that can admit when they’re wrong and is open to employees disagreeing with them from time to time.
- can handle pressure well. Holding a leadership position can be really stressful at times, so make sure the candidate you choose can stay composed and remain driven under pressure.
- can communicate effectively. Whatever the message may be, those in leadership positions need to know how to communicate with staff members — both above and below them. Their messages need to be clear and they need to understand when to be sensitive or frank.
- you can trust. You don’t want to always check in to make sure they’re handling their job. Hire someone you know will do what needs to be done without constant oversight.
Assess your current leadership team
If you’re looking to recruit the best managers to your company, they’ll want to be among other great leaders. Assess your team to ensure that everyone is pulling their weight and are continuing to grow with your company. If you notice you’ve got people in place that aren’t engaged or are failing to motivate their teams, consider cleaning up shop and making way for those individuals that will have a really positive impact on your organization and team.
You likely have manager-ready employees currently at your organization, so look inward and see if there are any good prospects. Previous management isn’t a necessary prerequisite, so look at their skill development, how they communicate, and level of interest in management to identify employees that would be great managers.
For team members that aren’t quite ready for management but show promise and are eager to move into a leadership role, scope out how to further their career development and create a timeline that they can follow. Consider offering mentorship, coaching, and onsite training to get your employees to the next level.
Involve the right folks in the process
Make sure that those who will work closest with the position are involved in the process and can assess your candidates’ abilities. Ideally, your hiring team will be made up of a direct report, a peer, and the hiring manager. This will give you the best chance at finding the right fit by making sure there’s honest feedback on your candidates from all levels of your company.
Know what you’re lacking
Finding someone who’s the right fit for the role is important, and you also want to consider what your current leadership team is lacking. Is your leadership comprised of individuals who are great at their jobs but less approachable or open to change? Hire someone that will balance that out. Think about what’s missing from your team now, and seek that in your next manager.
Be a place great people want to work
Hiring the best people means you are an attractive employer who goes above and beyond to make their employees feel valued. Have a thorough look at your employer brand and make sure your reputation aligns with the talent you’re attempting to attract.
A few questions to evaluate with your HR team around your employer brand:
- Do we have mostly positive employee reviews on Glassdoor or Yelp?
- Do we offer competitive compensation and benefits for our employees?
- Do we prioritize a work-life balance?
- Does our company culture make our employees want to come to work every day?
- Do we prioritize diversity and inclusion?
- Do all employees have a voice?
- Do our customers feel positively about our company?
All of these questions reveal important criteria about your company’s ability to attract and retain the best managers. Make sure you’re prioritizing improvements where necessary to build a brand you’re proud of and your employees are proud to be a part of. And don’t forget to advertise these changes on your career site and social media to get the word out to prospective candidates.
The faster you start the process, the faster you’ll have a great manager leading your team. Does your company need help with hiring the best individuals fast? Schedule a demo today to see how Hireology can transform your hiring process.