You’re a Better Boss When You’re a Better Teacher

Teaching is not just for a traditional classroom. It is also not just for people with education degrees. In fact, teaching should be a big part of the workplace on a regular basis. Some of the best bosses out there would also make great teachers in a classroom setting. Working in management is difficult, which is why you must stop bossing people around and start teaching them how things are done properly.

Here’s how to be a much better manager by developing your teaching abilities.

Stop Saying “No” and “Yes”

Make it a point to remove the words “no” and “yes” from your regular vocabulary at the office. Let’s face it; nothing in the business world is as simple as a yes-or-no answer. It is not that black and white. The next time an employee comes to you with a problem or a question, do not simply say yes or no. Instead, help them weed through the possible solutions and come to a conclusion that is good for the company.

Ask Questions in Response to Questions

When employees come to you with questions, answer them with questions. By simply answering their questions, you take away their ability to think for themselves. Even though some employees might find it annoying that you answer a question with a question, it is a great teaching moment for them. Ask them what they think about the situation or what they would do if they were in charge. Let them really think about the situation and come to a solution on their own.

Let Employees Take Responsibility for their own Solutions

When employees want a yes-or-no answer to their problem, they are shifting the responsibility to someone else. Do not let this happen. Instead, let your employees take on the responsibility when it comes to problem solving. This not only helps the employee learn, but it could also come in handy down the road when a top client needs something done that is normally out of the norm for the company.

Bosses Must Learn, Too

If you really want your employees to learn on the job, you must show them that you are learning at the same time. Do not come across as a fountain of knowledge to your employees. Instead, do as much learning as possible along with your employees. When you learn along with your employees, it shows them a different side of you and will make you a better boss.

Becoming a better boss takes a lot of experience and knowing what to do in certain situations. One of those is stepping back from the management side of things and becoming more of a teacher to employees.

Portico Staffing, based in West Des Moines, has been connecting Des Moines professionals and employers for nine years. Learn more at