Management is like walking a tightrope sometimes - you have to be very careful how you proceed or you are very likely to come tumbling down. You need to be able to motivate and inspire your employees, while at the same time focusing on the needs of the business and ensuring that your team performs strongly. Everyone needs to take the time to develop their own unique style, but there are a few things you should consider if you are just becoming a manager for the first time or are looking to enhance your skills.
Communication is Key
The ability to communicate well with your employees can be absolutely invaluable. People appreciate being kept in the loop and this is likely to cut down some of the whispering and rumours that fly around certain companies. Taking a transparent approach can help staff better understand their role in the team, as well as the goals of the entire department as part of the company. Remember that communication is a two-way street, so you should encourage openness from your team members too.
Establish Strong Relationships
Some managers try to become best friends with their team, while others remain distant and boss-like. The best course of action lies somewhere between the two. Finding out who your team are outside of work is a great way of building a rapport, but you also need them to know that you are the one in charge. Try to have one-on-one meetings with staff on a regular basis to establish good relationships with them.
Feedback in Important
Don’t underestimate the importance of feedback. This can be a vital tool for employees so they know if they are doing a good job or something needs to be improved. People are hugely motivated by constructive feedback, so the managers that don’t offer it are risking their team becoming disinterested and distant towards their job. Don’t just wait for the big projects to tell people about a job well done, but try to do this on a more regular basis.
Never Stop Developing Your Skills
If you’re a first-time manager, chances are you will want to learn everything as quickly as you can. But remember, becoming a great manager is an ongoing process. If you’ve been a manager for a certain number of years, you may have become set in your ways so you don’t keep up with the latest thinking in the field. There are a range of management training organisations out there so read more about Ellis Whittam's service here. A willingness to keep learning and developing is extremely important for the best managers.
Professionalism extends from doing a great job yourself to acting as a strong representative for the entire organisation. It does no good if you are openly critical about company policy or another manager who you don’t think is performing well. Addressing issues head on is the only way they have a chance of being solved.