Recently I met up with someone that I had worked with a few years ago and they revealed something that I was completely unaware of as a manager. Someone on my team had cracked my code. They believed that the height of my shoes determined what sort of mood I was in and therefore what type of day it would be. If I walked into the office with extremely high heeled shoes, people ran for cover and avoided me all day. I had a good laugh but then I thought about it. What if they were right? What if I had given off unintended signals to my team.
As a manager, you may underestimate the impact your words (or shoes) may have on the people around you and that’s why it is important to be measured in what you say and in your body language in order not to send the wrong signals to our colleagues and teams. Sometimes even that may not be enough. I’ve had members on my team tell me that my very short emails sometimes left people wondering if I was upset (not at all, I just don’t like to write long emails)
One more thing to think about though, its also important that as team members, we don’t jump to conclusions. Not to hesitate to ask when we are not sure. If anyone had asked me then, I would have said to them, there’s nothing wrong, I simply love my shoes!
Have you ever given off the wrong message unintentionally as a manager or have you ever made an assumption about a boss? Share your stories.