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Wear | March 2023

Start 2023 on the right foot: Look out for your team

Beige Steel Blue Work Boots

After a few strange years, things are getting back on track for tradies. Finding, retaining and inspiring the best crew for the job has never been more important. Managers and team leaders – whether in mining, construction, oil & gas, transportation, warehousing or maintenance – have their work cut out.

To inspire excellence, you must be willing to put in the hard work. Here are a few ways managers can step up and lead by example during a busy year.

Make safety a priority

From toolbox meetings to high-quality tradie boots, safety is a holistic endeavor. Exceptional managers are proactive about safety. They communicate clearly, encourage personal accountability, and show their team the right way to do things.

  • Ensure your team has the right PPE
  • Adopt a zero-tolerance risk policy
  • Don’t assume everyone knows the rules
  • Reiterate, retrain, and refresh on safety protocols


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Encourage collaboration

Many hands make light work, as the saying goes. Fostering a collaborative team environment has a lot of benefits, some of which might not be obvious right away:

  • Increases productivity
  • Encourages skills sharing
  • Keeps co-workers accountable
  • Creates opportunities to talk
  • Builds loyalty and retains talent
  • Fosters pride in an individual’s work

Autocrats demand compliance. Leaders build trust.

If you lead by example, communicate transparently, and recognize excellence, you’ll soon see how everyone benefits when teams work together.

Talk about mental health

Trades are tough. Long days in tradie boots take their toll mentally as well as physically. Encouraging your team to monitor and manage mental health will result in a more productive and engaged workforce producing excellent results.

  • Fight mental health stigma and lead by example
  • Watch for signs of burnout and exhaustion
  • Make support options available
  • Check in with your team
  • Encourage people to reach out before issues bubble over

Organizations like National Alliance on Mental Illness have excellent resources for tradespeople, managers and mates.

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Target excellence, not “good enough”

Strong leaders are always looking for ways to improve. We live that ethos at Steel Blue as we strive to design the best work boots year after year.

It’s easy to ask for excellence, but you need to demonstrate it daily as a leader. Despite the tight employment market, good people will stick around if they feel supported and adequately challenged.

The best gear for the best results

Exceptional results require perseverance, effort and skill. But there’s no reason for team leaders to take those long strides alone.

Steel Blue makes the best work boots for demanding jobs, giving tradies a solid foundation for excellent work. Explore our tradie boots to see how we’re supporting workers every step of the way in 2023.

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