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Being a manager puts you in the role of being a leader, a mentor, and a motivator. It’s a role of someone who commands and controls but who also coordinates and communicates with his employees, all for the success of a business.
You will be put in the shoes of a parent, of a one who watches over all and decides for everyone. But greater the power greater the responsibility. Deming was the first who famously noted that “85% of all operational failures are the fault of fallible managers, not failing workers”. Managers are the ones who get to create a system, and quality of output(profit) is a direct result of that system.
From starting your own business to earning a management promotion in an already established company, here are some management secrets for which you won’t have to go to the old wise-men on a top of an ancient mountain.
1. Grow others
Even though being primarily their responsibility, a good manager develops and grows his employees, or their skills to be precise. This can be achieved through education and learning whilst on the job. Talk to them about their career path and point out some of the paths available.
Make a 12-month development plan for one or two career goals they wish to achieve. Employees personal development and career should be a priority. Everyone wants to progress and to have a meaningful and valued job. 78% of workers would stay with their employer if they saw a career path within the organization.
Support your employees from the very beginning of their career. If they are foreigners, help them with learning the new language and ease their adaptation to a new environment. If they are disabled, provide assistance and on-the-job support in a way that adjusts to their condition. If you are unsure how or don’t have the time, you can always outsource such work to disability employment services or different language learning schools.
2. Grow yourself
This time it’s all your responsibility. Only you can change and improve yourself. If you wish a higher-up to manage you better, suggest them how. Want more feedback? Ask for it. Imprint in yourself that learning never ends and there is always a room for improvement. Create your own 12-month personal development plan. Intelligence has nothing to do with learning.
Realizing that you can learn and are willing to do so is way more important. Only by doing so you will maybe reach your full potential, an after that realize again that there is room for more. Be open to new beliefs, never be afraid to ask questions and forever remain curious.
If all this proves too difficult, search for a mentor. Someone who you can ask questions about work and receive a supporting shoulder when in need of one. An excellent manager who already experienced your problems and nuances while working the same job is the best pick. Or someone who experienced first-hand the handling of many different situations. Either search for someone inside or outside of your company.
3. Strengths and weaknesses
Elevate their strengths instead of trying to level their weaknesses. People change only when they wish to, and even then, must go through an ordeal to do it. That’s why successful managers try to build upon existing positive attributes instead of working hard to eliminate deeply rooted bad habits and behaviors.
Managing others doesn’t require changing others to suit the needs of a manager, but changing yourself as a leader to suit the needs of his employees. Discuss with your employees what they consider their weaknesses to be, and if you want someone to act differently try changing the way you work with them.
“To lead is neither to push or pull”. Demonstrate instead of explicating. Expect that you are the first who needs to get their hands dirty. If you’re asking others to work overtime, stay with them yourself. Provide recognition to others. Humans learn mostly through imitation; your employees will pick up and follow your behavior patterns. If you want others to admit their mistakes, first admit your own.
Be a positive role model that inspires others to follow you doing the work the best they can. Charismatic leaders can inspire their followers to work even beyond their capabilities. They also show a great level of confidence and the ability to show their employees that they have the same qualities.
69% of managers aren’t comfortable communicating with their employees. Learn how to communicate effectively in all areas, be it in person, on print or emails. Avoid defensive posturing in conversations. Be prepared to give and receive feedback, either a positive or negative one.
Truth is the beginning and the end of any meaningful and positive conversation. Every lie will only hurt you in the long run, however effective it may seem in the short term. For a team to have high performance, its members must feel comfortable and trust their leader. Start by speaking the truth yourself first. Take questions from team members, and don’t be scared to say that you have no answer, but will soon find one.
Use the aforementioned methods to help yourself but also others. A good manager is nothing without a team to lead. And an excellent manager is the one who groomed and trained its workers to their full potential.
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LARRY AYONMIKE – MD/CEO (A-lartinika Nig. Resources)