Getting Employees to Follow Your Lead Without Force

Anyone can be a boss, but becoming a leader that your employees want to follow is a completely different story. All too often managers and others in leadership positions force their employees to comply with their rules and regulations. However, this leads to resentment, lack of engagement, and high turnover rates. On the other hand, successful leaders exhibit unique traits and characteristics that attract people to follow them. Here are a few tips on how to become a leader that other people want to follow. 

Show Respect

Inspiring others starts with earning their respect, and the quickest way to earn someone’s respect is to give it to them first. You cannot expect employees to respect you simply because of your title. Respect starts with you and you can demonstrate respect for your team by treating everyone fairly, listening to them and addressing their needs, communicating openly and honestly, and expressing your gratitude for their hard work. When employees feel respected by their leader, it will inspire loyalty and reciprocity. 

Lead By Example

If you want a team that works hard and cooperates, you need to show them what that looks like. You, too, are a member of the team and you set the tone. Don’t just tell your employees what you expect of them- show them by doing it yourself. 

Build Trust

People are inclined to follow someone they trust. That means you need to be confident in your ability and demonstrate your dedication to the company and your team. You need to be accountable and willing to take responsibility for problems, rather than searching for people to blame. You also need to encourage your team members to take responsible risks that are well-thought-out. They need to know their leader won’t punish them for their efforts. You want your employees to know that you have their back and will support them in everything they do. 

Recognize and Reward Success

Employees need to know that they are appreciated and valued and that their leader will reward them for their contribution. You don’t have to wait for performance reviews to celebrate success. Take time to reward your team members even for minor accomplishments and milestones along the way. It can even be something as simple as a pat on the back or verbal praise, but remember that recognition goes a long way in building a rapport with your team.