Effective management skills are at the heart of every successful staff and business. Great managers have a natural ability to make their staff feel welcome and appreciated. They understand that when employee morale is good, job satisfaction is also good. Happy employees are also more productive employees and we can all guess what more productive employees mean? Answer: more money for the company. So it’s really a win, win situation! Of course, employees are not only seen as there to make a profit for the company, they are viewed as possible potential managers themselves. Great managers understand that it’s not about them, it’s about the people following them. The best managers live by this motto and do whatever they can to not only lead, but to inspire and empower others. Management is very much about having a power to the people type of mentality.
I’ve encountered many types of managers in my lifetime, so I can tell you from experience that the best ones, the ones that I remember fondly, were the ones who were always looking to empower their employees while developing their skills. They also did more to let their employees know that they were appreciated and that their work, no matter how trivial, mattered. That is one of the qualities of a great manager, not simply someone who can ‘put up numbers’. And, while I’ve encountered good and great managers, I’ve also encountered some that were not so great. I’ve found over time that those not so great ones are more self-centered and feel that any accolades directed at their department or staff are simply due to their own good management skills. These self-centered managers are also usually less effective at their job and deal with more staff issues in comparison to those that treat their staff well. If you’re considering a career in management, our Principles of Management course will teach you the building blocks you will need to be not just one of the good ones, but one of the great ones.
“Am I a constant example to my subordinates in character, dress, deportment, and courtesy?” asked General Douglas MacArthur. In case you don’t know who that is, the General has been widely regarded as one of America’s best military leaders. So, I think it’s safe to say this is a man who probably managed his fair share of individuals (and based on his quote I would bet that he did it well). The message that MacArthur was trying to convey is that you should lead by example. However, I’d like to offer a different perspective (not that I’m disagreeing with something that a great General once said). I’d like to think that the best managers not only lead by example, but spend more time focusing on others than they do on themselves. It doesn’t matter where you fall on the management totem pole, focus on your employees and they will respect you and be loyal to you in return. A great leader is never done learning; to review more skills that will help you manage your team effectively check out our Psychology of Motivational Leadership course.
Leaders aren’t born, they’re made and as a manager, it’s your job to make them. Here’s a list of things that you can do to be the best manager that you can be to your team.
Know Your Players
Ask any professional coach what each of their players strengths and weaknesses are and they could probably rattle them off the top of the head. They know their players inside and out, what makes them tick, what gives them strength, and also what their weaknesses are. They gather this information and utilize it to improve their players and their athletic teams. As a manager, it is your job to do the same thing with your team of employees. Knowing their strengths is just as important as knowing their weaknesses. Use your knowledge to develop their skills. Pair employees with different skill sets together so that they can learn off one another instead of having to always depend on you to guide them. Join other great managers who are interested in learning how to coach to develop the skills of their team by enrolling in this great course on career coaching and development. A good coach knows their starting line, a great coach knows who the hidden talents are and what they need to do to develop them.
There is No ‘I’ in Team
A good manager not only knows their players they also know and understand the team dynamic. Teams usually follow a certain pattern of development, forming, norming, storming and performing. Management should be with their team every step of the way encouraging them and supporting.
Don’t Take the Easy Route
It may seem like the most logical thing to put a team together of people who share similar personalities and traits. People that you know will get along well with one another. The smart move however, would be to put a team together of slightly different personalities that could provide different viewpoints and solutions for a situation. Being able to consider different ways of doing things and working together to overcome obstacles are tell tale signs of a great team, and great leadership.
Prepare for Future Success
Be as active and involved in your companies recruiting as possible. Enroll in our Interview Skills Training course to learn effective questions and techniques that will help you find prospective team mates and weed out the ones that will not bring anything to the table.
The Power of Delegating
Let your team learn more by enabling them to do more. This all goes back to the principle of knowing your teams strengths and weaknesses. Assign your team members tasks based on their ability and lay out a clear definition of what it is that needs to be done. As a manager it may be hard to entrust team members with a task that you would typically handle, not to mention a little scary at first. But, allowing them to take on tasks that they normally wouldn’t not only shows them that you trust them, it also will free up more time for you to get other tasks done. Some managers may have a hard time letting go of work as crazy as that sounds. Learn how to Delegate, Any Task at Any Time to Any Person with our course. You’ll be able to accomplish more and develop your teams skills at the same time.
All of the skills that we have listed and described above would be useless if you weren’t able to properly communicate. Great communication skills are the key to being a great manager, without them your team will have no direction. Hold weekly meetings with your team to gauge if there are any issues or problems that they are having a hard time resolving. If you’ve found that several members of your team are struggling with the same issue, it may be time to schedule a refresher training on the topic at hand. You could also allow other team members to try and provide solutions for the problems that have been presented. You can’t be a good manager and certainly not a great one with poor communication skills. Brush up on them and learn 7 Tools to Communicate Tactfully with thousands of others who are tired of not being heard.