Are you a good boss?


Here's what you should be asking yourself to determine if you're a good boss.

Are you a good boss?

How do you evaluate your own performance as a boss? Sure, you might hire consultants to give feedback on how to grow the practice, but you could also be asking them to interview staff to discover areas where you could improve. A third party might be able to observe interactions with your staff more subjectively then you could evaluate yourself.

And what if employees were able to assess their boss? As an employer, you should stay open to honest criticisms and your employees shouldn’t fear retribution for speaking out.

To critique your own job performance, you should be asking yourself these questions:

  • Are you consistent with how you handle problems?
    There is nothing worse than your staff not being able to predict your behavior. That causes tremendous stress. What are you doing to alleviate that?

  • Do you yell at your employees?
    Raising your voice is never appropriate in the workplace. Bringing your staff to the point of tears is damaging for your enterprise. Ask around. No one will love a job or boss when they’re self-esteem is being torn down. Plus, happy employees typically perform better overall. This is one simply way to cut down on turnover.

  • Do paychecks come out on time? Your employees count on getting paid on a certain date in order to pay their own bills on time. Many are living paycheck to paycheck. Imagine the havoc it causes if they don’t get paid on time. Bounced checks really do happen. And you should be planning ahead if your payroll person is sick or on vacation.

  • Do you have an open-door policy?
    Communication is critical in any business. Having a staff that is intimidated by you can harm your growing business. People have a tendency to hide mistakes particularly if they are afraid of you. The workplace should have a professional, but semi-relaxed atmosphere where people can share ideas.

  • Is everyone clear on the business strategy for the practice?
    It can be problematic if employees don’t understand how a practice works financially. Make sure your employees stay informed on the business’ overall goals so they can work to achieve them. Without this information, ignorance may cause a lot of havoc in your operation.

  • Are there any incentives to get buy-in for meeting or exceeding objectives?
  • Your employees are part of the team. Take care of them, and they will take care of your business. This should include benefits and PTO/vacation time, but also consider other incentives like bonuses and employee recognition programs.

  • Are you compassionate and understanding in the face of emergencies?
    Flexibility can go a long way in showing compassion to your employees. A sick child or parent, health issues, or even (heaven forbid) a car accident may give rise to an adaptable schedule. This is where creativity in managing workflow comes into play. Your employee should be a part of the planning of how to make it all work. If you give a little now, they’re likely to be grateful and overall happier in the long run.

  • Are you seeking the input from the team at-large when making hiring decisions?
    Your employees care about who you hire. Having them involved in the interviewing process does two things: 1) They can bring a valuable perspective on the day-to-day minutia that you may overlook, which also gives them insight into what characteristics are need for a potential hire to be successful; and 2) It shows your current employees that you value and respect their opinion. They care about who you hire, and you should consider their point of view.

  • Do you incorporate your employees in strategic planning for new business development?
    It could be a big mistake if you aren’t. The people in the trenches have incredible ideas to expand the business. You should be tapping into this resource.

  • Do you pay for continuing education and expenses for trainings and conferences? If you want your staff to be on top of the industry, you need to send them to training or CE courses. That doesn’t just mean local conferences. Their education benefits both the practice, the staff, and your patients.

  • Is your practice a fun place to work?
  • There are some who might argue that work shouldn’t be fun.’ But who wants to go to a place and be stressed out or bored all day? Is that the kind of work culture you want to be a part of? Special occasion lunches like birthdays or an Employee Appreciation Day are great. But also consider activities that get everyone together outside of the office, such as happy hours, bowling nights, karaoke, and company parties that aren’t only centered around the holidays (when everyone’s social calendar is already full). Volunteering in the community that you work in is another great idea that would not only promote team bonding, but it would also reflect well on the business as a whole.

There are so many things to consider when you’re the boss. But it’s important to remember that it is difficult to get loyalty from staff who are scared, stressed, and feel that they aren’t valued. If you want your business to be successful, make sure your employees are happy. Take a look at yourself as the boss and decide if you are serious about your own growth and development as a professional. Then, do something to make sure you are creating the work environment you always envisioned.

Email me at and share your experiences with me about what kind of boss you are.

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