Leading by example seems to be an obvious trait that we should all expect from our leadership. I’ve always found it all too common and difficult to relate to managers, peers, or even subordinates who are willing to offer advice on strategies (often unsolicited) when it seems that they rarely, if ever, follow their own words.

Yelling at your team is most likely not going get you the results you’re looking for.

I often think back to my experiences during my high school days playing sports. The coaches that took the approach of yelling and kicking over trash cans as a means of getting a point across never made an impact on me. When crap hit the fan, I found that those coaching personalities rarely knew what to do to solve the problem…other than yelling more. I didn’t need someone yelling in my ear to get me motivated; instead I needed guidance to hone my skills and make me understand what needs to improve. Sorry, fear and intimidation generally doesn’t work, especially with millennials.

Are you hiring reps with a burning desire to sell?

Like any good coach, a solid boss or sales development manager shouldn’t need to micromanage. At times, we all may need a solid boot in the arse for some periodic motivation if we’re off course, but in general, we should all have the burning desire inside of us to be successful. Otherwise, what’s the point of showing up? You’re in sales right? Just showing up doesn’t always equal success.

You need to be clear with your vision and feel comfortable with others driving the bus.

Ultimately, what we owe our employees is a defined understanding of what we want from them. Since I’ve moved into a broader operations role here at QuotaFactory, I find myself battling bigger concepts that I’m responsible for explaining to the team. Rather than measuring individual performance of our clients or of a sales development rep, I’m evaluating overall performance that has 10x the inputs. Don’t get me wrong, I love the challenge. But being in the role means I don’t have as much direct control over what I always feel is needed to drive success. What I’ve found is that I need to be more comfortable than I’ve ever been with letting others drive the bus. This can apply to all levels of the organization. Even with sales development reps. Assuming you’re monitoring what they’re doing, it is possible to make them feel empowered.

Seth Godin once wrote a blog post around the saying, “Don’t do what I said, do what I meant.”

I feel this saying articulates the struggles for folks taking on new roles with broader challenges. Seth speaks to getting everyone on the same page. At the end of the day, you want a team of people that can clearly see the objective and understand the reasoning behind it.

I guess what I’ve learned, not surprisingly, is that not everyone thinks the way I do. When managing a team full of different personalities, my first responsibility is for them to understand my goals and objectives, along with the “why” behind them. If you feel that message isn’t getting through to your team, then as Seth says, “The failure is yours.”

Think about how you’re communicating that message. Shouting instructions most likely isn’t going to be effective. A clear message and goal, plus the freedom to execute it, should be what we’re all striving for as leaders in sales and sales development.