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Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Three Effective Management Styles

When I'm feeling nostalgic, I sometimes think of my favorite teachers--the ones who really inspired me. As an adult, I realize what amazing leaders they were: kind and sympathetic, but demanding; helpful and encouraging, but always tough.

It's not as often that we think about our favorite bosses, but they can be just as influential. We spend most of our waking hours at work, and inept management can turn those hours into drudgery. The Harvard Business Review blogged about a study of employees returning from extended sick leave, and they named several leadership types that best facilitated employees who were transitioning back to work. The three most effective types are below:
  • The Protector shows compassion and works to keep the employee in the loop.
  • The Problem Solver finds creative solutions to the challenges of returning to work after a long absence.
  • The Contact Maker listens to the employee's concerns and cares about his or her emotional well-being.
Although wellness professionals naturally focus on the physical, we like to remind our clients that wellness is much more than health statistics. And especially now, with stress running high, I think it's important to emphasize the human needs of our employees. Helping them them stay well, both mentally and physically, is not only good business: it's the right thing to do.

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