A great leader and a bad leader can make all the difference. The effect can change the atmosphere of your entire company, inspiring employee fellowship and consistent improvement.

Picture the leaders you’ve worked for in the past — both good and bad. How did you feel under each leader? Given the choice, which type of leader would you want to become?

Here are five ways to set a positive example and keep yourself from being the next “bad leader” experience:

1.    Consistent expectations: Clearly lay out roles, responsibilities, and how they fit into the big picture of the company. Remember: everyone wants to be a part of something big, and everyone wants a role they can be fully invested in.

2.    Basic guidelines: Guidelines provide clear boundaries on acceptable and unacceptable behavior, and allow you, the manager, to empower your employees within specific parameters.

3.    Ongoing training: Proper training facilitates productivity, effective performance, and job satisfaction in your employees, but a surprising 50% of most company work forces have outdated skills. Keep your employees out of this statistic by constantly updating training and introducing new skills and methods whenever possible.

4.    Accountability: You owe it to your employees — and your company — to ensure accountability is the hallmark of your operations.

5.    Rewards and consequences: Exceptional employees deserve to be properly rewarded, and under-performers need to be disciplined (or trained). While both are important, I prefer a positive/negative interaction ratio of about 6 to 1.

Dedicating the team to these five leadership objectives will drive you to great leadership. Letting them know what to expect, laying out clear guidelines, providing continuous coaching and training, keeping everyone accountable, and giving appropriate feedback will drive your team toward truly outstanding results.

Mike Moore is the HVAC Training Director at HVAC Learning Solutions, an HVAC industry expert in sales, technical, and business training. Visit Mike’s blog for more insights. Mike can be reached on Twitter @hvaclearning or on Google+ at gplus.to/hvactraining.