Want More Reliable Employees?
Look in the Mirror!

Reliability yields success. It is reliable products and services that keep customers coming back for more, and it is reliable people that ensure those products and services meet expectations. If you want your team to be reliable, it all starts with you as a leader.

Lead by Example

Nobody likes working for a manager who never gets their hands dirty. If you want your team to pitch in and do what it takes to get the job done, your employees must see you pitching in as well. If they hear you say, "That's not my job," you can bet you'll hear them say it back to you.

Do What You Say You'll Do

It's tempting to say, "Yes," to everyone, but if you can't manage your commitments, you will let people down. If your team sees you continually overpromising and underdelivering, they will follow suit.

Remember that your commitments extend to your employees, too. If you agree to meet with an employee at 3:00, don't blow it off unless something extremely pressing comes up, and if it does, reschedule immediately and keep that second appointment.

Delegate Strategically

No matter how effective a leader you may be, you can't achieve your group goals alone. Reliable leaders are able to sit down and delegate tasks and projects effectively, with an eye for which person is right for which job. Delegating not only helps you meet your responsibilities, it also shows your team you trust them with important tasks and projects.

Demonstrate Expertise

People expect their managers to know more than they do about certain aspects of the business. Reliable managers understand the ins and outs of the company and of each job on their team. Reliable managers don't "wing it." They continually learn and grow so they can speak with authority when employees have questions or concerns.

Exude Honesty and Transparency

Employees know when their leaders are hiding things from them. Reliable managers keep their team in the loop, and provide as much information as they ethically can so employees feel comfortable. This is especially important when teams or businesses are experiencing change. A little bit of transparency and honesty goes a long way towards building trust.

Follow the FILO Rule

Managers should be the first in the office in the morning and the last out at night. Managers who show up late, disappear for hours in the middle of the day or blow out of the office before quitting time cannot expect their teams to respect their work schedules, either.

Coach People Towards Success

"Do as I say," is not a strong motivator. If you want your people to put their best foot forward, you have to be there to coach them through struggles, teach them new skills and help them build their confidence. Give your team the tools they need to succeed, and they will flourish.

Be Accessible

Managers who stay locked away in their offices all day or seem to disappear when the pressure is on cannot lead effectively. Yes, you may need to block off some quiet time now and then, but cultivate an open-door policy and be as responsive as possible to questions and requests of your team members.

Recognize and Celebrate Success

People will give up if they feel their hard work isn't recognized. You don't have to throw your employees a ticker-tape parade every time they do something well, but saying, "Thank you," and recognizing success in staff meetings or company newsletters will reinforce the behaviors that led to their success.

Remember that your team mirrors your attitudes and actions. If you work on being reliable, your team will follow in your footsteps.