3 signs you're being too tough as a leader

Every leader feels pressure to achieve measurable results, which often requires imposing high expectations for success. But how do you know if you're being too tough on your team?

Leaders come in all shapes and sizes, with varying personality types and styles. In a recent Forbes article, Mark Murphy, a bestselling author and leadership training speaker, warns of being too harsh of a leader.

Here are three signs your leadership style is too harsh, according to Mr. Murphy.

1. Everyone stops talking when you enter a room. Although many believe this is a sign people were talking about you, this is not the case; it often means people are afraid of you. It's normal for a room to slowly hush when you walk in, "but there's a difference between a room quieting gently when you enter versus people shutting up mid-sentence out of fear," wrote Mr. Murphy.

2. Employees are silent when you give constructive feedback. Leaders have to give constructive criticism once in a while, and it is normal for the recipient to have a question or comment. The problem comes when the recipient remains quiet. "When constructive feedback is delivered too harshly, the recipient can get defensive, shut down mentally and never make that 'corrective leap,'" according to Mr. Murphy.

3. You talk more than 60 percent of the time in meetings. Meetings are different than assemblies. In assemblies, it's acceptable for a leader to spew lots of information. But meetings are typically intended for discussion among attendees. If you're the one doing most of the talking in a meeting, there's a chance your employees are too scared to speak up.

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