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The trickle-down effect of management and leadership in an organisation cannot be denied. A team of workers is only as solid as its manager. In fact, leadership is so important that bad managers are estimated to cause 56% of corporate failures. If you’re preparing for a leadership role, here are a few tips to staying out of the 56%.

Be innovative.

Successful leaders are often open to new ideas and ready to adopt change in an effort to improve and grow, even if it’s uncomfortable. Less effective leaders are typically satisfied with the status quo and apprehensive to embrace change. To be successful and manage an effective team, you need to stay open-minded, curious and interested.

Actively manage your team’s workload.

Excessive workload causes stress, and stress is a leading cause of employee absence. In fact, stress tends to result in long-term absences. According to research by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), the average length of a stress-related absence is 21 days. Work days cost money, whether or not employees show up at the office. Knowing how to manage team members’ workloads and promptly deal with overworked employees in a healthy, productive way saves time and money in the long run.

Care about engagement.

Employees who are interested, engaged and invested give their organisations a significant competitive edge. You can count on passionate employees to perform well. Not true with indifferent employees. Engaged employees are not only more likely to perform better than disengaged employees, they also tend to take fewer sick days (2.69 versus 6.10 days per year). Those extra days away from work translate into money wasted. Engaged employees are also less likely to leave an organisation than disengaged employees — 87% less likely. Turnover is expensive. Some estimates report the cost of replacing an employee is equal to that employee’s annual salary. Understanding what motivates and inspires your employees so that you have an engaged and passionate team in place is a big step toward success.

Think about and hone leadership skills.

Being a good leader comes more naturally to some than others, but it requires work and thought by all. Ineffective leaders can ultimately cause businesses to fail because the trickle-down effect from their actions and intentions is so significant. Studies show things like insufficient communication, lack of support, unnecessary micromanagement and poor direction can drive companies and organisations straight to failure. It’s important to take time to develop your leadership skills and be thoughtful about your actions.

Managing is no easy task. And it’s only getting harder due to fast-changing technology, complex organisational structures, international dynamics, challenging economics, increased transparency, environmental considerations and more. In the 21st century, managers have more to navigate than just schedules, promotions and raises. There’s a lot at stake and the pressure is on, but leaders who can manage successfully as well as inspire others often guide their teams and organisations to profitability and growth.

If you’re interested in furthering your education and advancing your career as a leader in your field, consider the 100% online management and leadership programmes at Coventry University College. Students learn about a wide range of business and leadership topics, and upon completion are prepared to serve in management positions in the for-profit, non-profit and government sectors. Funding is available for those who qualify.

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