I have managed multiple automotive quick lube shops in my day and have had over 50 different employees over a seven-year span. What is the one thing that they all say when it comes to me being their boss? Well, they all say that I am the best manager that they have ever worked for. All I simply want to do is create an equal and comfortable workplace for me and my employees, and in turn, I gain their respect and their loyalty in and out of the workplace. Now, me being the humble person that I am, I have always asked what their reasons were for putting me on such a high pedestal. Considering many of them had many jobs before they worked for me, I was curious. Their answers confirmed my thoughts.
I Respect My Employees
When it comes to people who work for me, I always make sure I treat them with respect no matter the situation. Just because I am their boss, it does not make me better than them. For all I know, I could have received the position because of good timing or because another employee turned the position down. So for me, showing respect is the number one thing I make sure I do when it comes to dealing with my employees. To gain respect in a leadership role, you must earn it, and that is exactly what I have done by showing them respect.
Equality Is Important
I try and make sure that I treat all my employees equally. In the working world, a lot of times you see certain employees getting special treatment or the benefit of the doubt. That is just not my style.
I remember a time when I had an exceptional employee that thought he was “above the law.” His work ethic was great, he was fast and efficient and worked extremely well with the team. As a matter of fact, he did so well, there were multiple times I left him in charge and was actually in the process of making him my assistant manager. The only problem was that he would show up late. Not too late, just by 5 or 10 minutes, but it was everyday for a whole week after I had told him about the possible promotion. He thought that because he was doing so well, he did not have to abide by the same rules as the other employees.
I ended up not giving him the promotion, he gave a different excuse everyday that week and it just got under my skin that he thought he was better than everyone else. It was just not fair to the team. If I had accepted this behavior from him I would have to let everyone else get away with it to, and that is just bad for business.
I Train My Employees
I remember a manager of another quick lube shop in the area. He thought that if he did not train his employees to be just as good as him, he would have job security. Needless to say, his employees ended up causing severe damage to a customer’s car.
My approach is different. If I know something, my employees know the exact same thing. I believe that if an employee sees that you are trying to help them move up and increase their knowledge for on and off the job situations, they will work their butts off for you. I do not fear an employee taking my job for two reasons: One of them goes back to the respect factor, if they respect you they will not just take your job from you. And two is that if I trained that employee so well that they are being considered as my replacement, then I feel that I did my job properly.
I enjoy being the boss that everyone likes to work for and look forward for many more compliments and great production from my team.