Employees Copy Everything You Do

You can talk as long as you want about certain procedures, but the employees will copy what you actually do, not what you say. Sometimes they are aware of this mimicry, but other times they aren’t, and sometimes is simply done to please the boss.

The same as children imitate parents, the same happens at the office.

A (boss) leader has many times greater power than he can imagine over its employees and I don’t mean banging his/her fist on some table till the coffee is spilled over.

Negative behavior is the easiest to copy.

You cannot ask employees not to smoke in the office when you smoke in yours.


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The same happens at the pool, when some dude is asked why does he pee in the water, and his angry response is ‘cause everybody does it. Well, when he was asked about it, the “release” of the liquid was taking place while standing on the diving board.

It was basically the same pool that announced: “Welcome to our OOL. Notice there’s no P in it”.

Everything you do is followed, weighed, and judged, your behavior, body language, mimics, but especially your conduct.

If they see the consideration you pay to customers, it’s very likely that your subordinates will do the same.

You have even greater chance that the bad “manners” will be imitated, which means, not only that you tolerate those behaviors, but you also “practice” them. You cannot ask your employees to put out some extra effort when you leave at 5 sharp.

For the past decades, trust, one of the most important ingredients in the relationship with company management, is dropping and not necessarily due to external factors.

What can you do as a boss to be seen as a role model:

  • Lead by example;
  • Keep your promises;
  • When you ask for something, make sure you’d do (or have done) yourself that particular something;
  • If you implement a new rule, be the first who respects it;
  • Communicate your expectations to your people;
  • Admit when you are wrong;
  • “Practice what you preach” (again);
  • Be consistent and persistent in what you do;
  • Help, mould and motivate your people;
  • Always have a spine!

A leader, formal or informal, will be imitated to a smaller or larger extent. According to the boss’ behavior first and then to employees’ behavior, the organizational culture  is shaped. This culture will make the difference in any kind of business. When competition has pretty much the same resources, it’s the people who make the difference.

Get your people to trust you, because your role is the most important to each of your employees!

Good luck succeeding!

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  1. […] is a role model for his team; so, no matter if the behavior is good or bad, the subordinates will follow the manager’s […]

  2. […] Employees copy all that you do, either good or bad, but the most dangerous behavior is the display of inconsistency and unpredictability. […]

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