Toxic leaders can devastate a workforce. They may be in charge of the most talented people in the industry, but if they lead in a toxic way, much of that talent will go to waste. A good leader will not only bring out the best in their employees, they will also push them past their limits, allowing them to reach their fullest potential. Learn to identify your toxic leadership traits and you will be able to lead more effectively. You will also reduce your stress and improve overall productivity within your work environment.
Do You Find Yourself Exhausted and Unfilled at the End of the Day?
When you’re stressed, angry, or upset, you don’t function efficiently. You tend to be irritable and often spend more time finding things to complain about than finding solutions to problems. You’re always looking to find fault with others before you look for faults within yourself. This constant and intense expenditure of energy can leave us exhausted at the end of the day. You may feel as if you accomplished nothing and that your entire day was wasted.
Are You Angry or Frustrated All the Time?
If you notice that you’re angry or frustrated most of the time, ask yourself why. The key to being a good leader is knowing your leadership style and finding ways to maximize your own potential. Be creative. Find where your passion lies. Do you enjoy the work you do? If so, then focus on finding your joy in helping others be productive. If not, consider finding a different job. Being angry and frustrated just minimizes your effectiveness as a leader. Take the time to relax and look for ways to enjoy what you do.
Do Your Employees Feel Valued and Appreciated?
A toxic leader rarely recognizes the true value of the people they work with. If you want to become a better leader, take the time to get to know your employees. Find their strengths and weaknesses. Help them identify their talents and then give them the tools and resources they need to make the most of their abilities. Show them how appreciative you are of the effort they put into the work they do. Recognize both individual and team efforts so that everyone can be proud of their efforts.
Do You Find Yourself Taking on the Majority of the Work?
A toxic leader will often take on the majority of the work because they don’t have faith in their employees. This can lead to resentment and may cause employees to not put in the effort they should. If you want to maximize your employees’ potential, encourage them. Delegate duties and then help each employee do a better job. They can only improve if you give them the guidance and support they need to succeed. Instead of stressing over the work, give your employees a chance to learn more and take on more responsibility.
When Was the Last Time You Practiced Self-Care?
The best way to get the most out of your workforce is to lead by example. This includes self-care and encouraging your employees to express themselves. Many employees don’t take time off because they are made to feel as if they aren’t trying hard enough when they do. Speaking their mind can get them in trouble as well. Take a day off when you need it and allow your team to work on their own. Encourage them to speak up when they have a question, concern, or an idea that may be useful. Taking time away and self-expression are great ways to keep the mind clear and more focused on the tasks at hand.
Do You Lack Enthusiasm or Passion?
Another toxic leadership trait is the lack of enthusiasm or passion that many leaders begin to feel when they no longer enjoy what they do. When you get to that point, it’s time to take a short break. Meet with your team and ask them what changes they would like to see in the workplace. Let them be more involved in some of the decision-making steps. Their ideas may be just what you need to find your passion again. Toxic leadership can be the result of depression, anxiety, addiction, or other mental health disorders. Consider talking to a counselor and looking for ways to get back into the swing of things. Becoming a good leader is a learning process. Find your own leadership style and continue to grow with your employees. Working together can bring out the best in both of you.