Leaders Don’t Always Have To Be Right

BY Kathy Crosett
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If you’re in a management role, you might be stuck on something that will negatively impact your leadership credibility. Specifically, you might think you should always be right. Managers who appear to have all of the answers might not realize they are doing themselves and their team a disservice.

Team Development

As Martin notes on his post in Cleverism, managers who are always right send a negative message to their team members. They are essentially telling their employees that they don’t need anyone’s help. That leaves team members wondering about their role. Will they never have a chance for advancement or to prove themselves? 

There are times, in emergency situation, when a manager must give an answer, whether it’s right or wrong. And the manager will take responsibility for the outcome. Otherwise, give your employees the opportunity to participate in finding answers to problems. They’ll feel empowered and engaged. 

Being Effective

Managers who insist on coming up with all of the answers aren’t always right. Sure, these managers may know how a specific process has always worked in the past. That doesn’t mean the process will work best now. An Eblin Group post reminds managers to think about the long-​term goal. You should strive to be effective in terms of meeting objectives instead of right.

If you are always rushing to bring your solution to the table, stop. Ask yourself if you need to come up with the answer immediately. If you don’t, take 24 hours to consider other solutions. Talk to a couple of team members to get their input. When you take this approach, you’ll likely find a better solution and increase the engagement of your team members. In addition, you’ll build credibility. Your employees will feel like they are participating in teamwork instead of working for a dictator.