by Matt Alderton | November 05, 2018
The most effective leaders aren't the ones who manage their employees. Rather, they're the ones who connect with them.
"You must work hard to build trust with your employees and forge some sort of relationships with them," says Small Business Trends contributor Larry Alton. "The first step in forming healthy relationships is simply to get to know them better. A quick hello when passing in the hallway won't do. You need to invest a little more time and effort."

To become more familiar with your employees -- and as a result, more effective at leading them -- try to spend more time with them outside the office.

One way to do so is by forming an extracurricular sports team, according to Alton. "Competition brings out everyone's true identity. Some people are aggressive and relentless, while others are more calm and calculated," he says. "While there are tastes of competition in the office setting, you can't get a totally accurate gauge unless you remove people from work. What better way to do this than by forming a team in a local rec sports league?"

Or, you can always volunteer together. "Get your team to volunteer on a Habitat for Humanity house-building project," Alton suggests. "There's something about stretching your team outside of its comfort zone and tangibly taking a project from start to finish that feels good and allows you to see your employees for who they really are (and vice versa)."

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Questions, Comments, Suggestions?
Contact Successful Meetings Editor in Chief Vincent Alonzo with your "How To" ideas.