Many people in the world have a lot of responsibilities. Managing said responsibilities is one of the key elements to success, but it can also be one of the most difficult and gruelling tasks. Often, managers neglect their happiness for that of their employees. This emotional exhaustion is an indication that something needs to change for your work-life balance to get back on track again.
One of the most common problems managers see is that they’re too focused on completing tasks themselves, rather than making sure that their employees are performing their job to the best of their ability.
Also, without proper mentoring, some employees can have a hard time achieving their work goals. So through a series of tips and tricks, here you’ll learn how to become a good manager. Let’s first start with the qualities of a good manager in general.
What are the qualities of a Good Manager?
A good manager is a leader that possesses many qualities. They are the figurehead of an organization and they have to know how to motivate the team to achieve long-term goals. To be a good manager, you need to have leadership skills, communication skills, organizational skills, and strategic decision-making abilities.
1. Leadership Skills
Being a good leader is very important for a good manager. The leader is the one that sets the standards. If you are not clear on what to do, you will not be able to make any decision at all without consulting with your team. You need to be able to deal with conflict, and know what the right solution is. Make sure that everyone understands what needs to be done and why it’s necessary.
2. Communication Skills
Good communication is very important. The person that manages others needs to be able to communicate effectively. To get any good ideas, you need to be able to accept others’ views.
3. Organizational Skills
Being organized is a great asset for every manager. The goal of the organization is not achieved without well-organized work. You need to have the ability to know how much time you have left on the project and be able to manage it properly. Being organized is the key to a successful business.
4. Strategic decision-making
Every manager has to be able to make good decisions. Making a bad decision can lead to big problems. You need to be able to analyze the situation and make a good decision out of it. This can help you save time and money which are two vital assets for every company.
How to become a Good Manager?
To become a good manager, you must first understand how the people around you work. You must be willing to adapt and change your management style based on what they need to get their jobs done.
It’s also important to understand your employees’ job expectations to help them determine how you can improve upon their job performance. After all, you’re the boss so creating the most effective work environment for them should be a top priority.
Once you get a better grasp of your employees’ needs, formulating a plan is crucial. Once this happens, it will be easier for you to learn how your employees handle things at home and at work, as well as their reactions when their needs are not met.
If you’re looking to grow in your career and become a good manager, here are some of the best things you can do:
1. Understand the big picture
It might be hard at first, but being able to see what’s happening across your team is essential. Plus, it will give you a better understanding of how to motivate people and lead them in the right direction.
2. Listen more than you talk
Yes, this is something many managers already do, but you must keep your ears to the ground. You’ll do a better job at getting to know your team and allowing them to get the best out of themselves.
3. Document what works – and why it works
Everyone makes mistakes, but great managers know how to learn, and watch their people grow. Don’t be afraid to document what you picked up on with your team. You must document what worked and why it worked so that you can apply these tactics and strategies again in the future.
4. Learning from failure is better than always being right
If a person under you fails, it’s not your fault – it’s your fault for not having trained them properly! A good manager doesn’t always want to be right. Helping others see the light is a better goal to reach.
5. Be positive
If everyone else is down, it’s your job to help elevate the mood. It’s not always easy, but you can do it by being strong in your convictions, and keeping as positive of a view as possible.
6. Lead from the front
A good manager doesn’t sit on the sidelines and direct traffic – they’re actively involved, doing their job! This goes a long way when it comes to getting people on board with what you have in mind.
If you want to be a good manager, you need to learn how to delegate tasks effectively and create a winning team. Sometimes as a leader, you unfairly force yourself to work on projects that could be handled by someone else in the company. This is called working “above your pay grade” and it leads to bad results and wasted time. Good managers don’t do this. They delegate tasks strategically.
You have too much work to do. At some point, there will be a time in your work life when you have more work than you can handle. Delegation allows others to contribute and is a great way to increase productivity. For example, if you are overloaded with projects, you might consider delegating one or two of them to your more capable employees.
8. Learn to get to know your employees
Each employee has their strengths, weaknesses, and styles of learning. As an administrator, it is your responsibility to fully understand the individual’s strengths and weaknesses to guide them and establish a positive relationship between your boss and employees. This can be accomplished simply by looking at their work and asking questions frequently can also provide information.
Harvard Business Review suggests asking “what was the best day you’ve had at work in the last three months?” to stimulate the employee to think about the work and projects they are most comfortable with. Based on their answers you can adjust the way you assign tasks to the employee to achieve the best result.
It is also possible to consider asking the opposite question: “What was the worst day you’ve had at work in the last three months?” These conversations help you to determine what’s not working, so you can fix the issue.
9. Create a friendly and inclusive workplace
The tone you set for your workplace will greatly affect the overall success of your business. It is crucial to create a happy and enjoyable work environment that makes employees feel respected and valued. A satisfied employee is a more productive one. You can build an inclusive and diverse workplace culture by demonstrating positive behavior regularly, and also organizing occasional group bonding events.
You must regularly offer praise for team achievements (even tiny ones). Leaders who are great at acknowledging their employees and express their appreciation as often as they can. Employees would like to feel appreciated and feel that their work is noticed. When you acknowledge them for their work and it inspires employees to continue to do their best.
“Simply put, great bosses, pause frequently to praise others and promote the positive, rather than harping on shortcomings and mistakes,” Shtull declared.
The act of giving praise can boost team morale and help create positive workplace culture. If you do not provide positive feedback and praise the employees could think their work is not appreciated and may begin to feel less concerned. Alongside daily praise, Leah de Souza, executive coach, and director at Trainmar Consulting recommends motivating individuals by fostering team bonds and celebrating.
“Set aside time for team bonding – pure fun – and team celebration – a reward for a milestone team achievement,” she added. “Each of these team events is important to the cohesiveness and element of fun in the team. What is fun can differ culturally and from team to team, so make sure to get feedback on ideas.”
Ask your team what kind of recognition they like and how often they’d prefer team-building events to take place. These occasions could be linked to volunteer work, or simply fun; however, you must make sure that every event is appropriate and inclusive for your workplace.
10. Set goals, and expectations, and give feedback
The most crucial aspects of being a successful manager are setting objectives and conveying goals to team members. Managers must be focused on establishing SMART (specific and real-time, measurable, and achievable deadline-bound) targets for the teams they manage. De Souza said the objectives that are established at an organization level must be transferred to individual and departmental goals.
“There must be a transparent link between all goals set throughout the organization,” she added. “Goals must be set in agreement with team members.”
When setting goals, successful managers are open to team members regarding their expectations. De Souza recommends reviewing goals regularly. You should frequently review the team members to ensure that they’re satisfied and challenged within their roles. Communication isn’t a one-way street however, you should be attentive as you speak.
“Leaders who don’t listen will eventually be surrounded by people who have nothing to say, nothing to add,” Shtull declared. “In addition to giving up control of all the work, as a boss, you’ll also have to break the addiction to being right all of the time. Don’t always promote your view. If your ideas sound set in stone, your team members won’t want to offer theirs.”
Xan Raskin the founder and CEO of Artixan Consulting Group LLC, said that the best leaders don’t just listen, they listen to comprehend. “Making sure your employees know you not only heard them, but you understand – even if you disagree – goes a long way to building a long-term rapport with employees.”
How to be a Good Supportive Manager
Managers can be tough, but that doesn’t mean you should let your employees burn out. They’ve achieved a certain level of responsibility and self-sufficiency, so do everything you can to keep them motivated and healthy. As a manager, you must be supportive of your employees. A supportive manager is an individual who fosters a positive environment, enhances the morale of employees, and builds camaraderie in the workplace. It’s not enough to just have goals for them, you have to be sure what they need to succeed is there.
A good supportive manager will not only acknowledge their employees’ strengths and weaknesses but also recognize how they can help their professional goals.
Here are some ideas for how to be a good supportive manager in five effective ways:
1. Ask direct questions
Think of it as one big interview at the start of every meeting or conversation with your employees. The goal is to completely understand where their head is, something you can’t fully accomplish through written communication. For example, if they say they need to go out of the office to run an errand, ask them how the errand will help their work. You may find that they need to pick up an instrument or artwork for a presentation. Conversely, you can also turn this around by asking them what you can help with.
2. Ask them if there is anything you can do
Don’t just ask, and don’t offer. Instead, ask them if they have any questions (you never know when they’ll need them), then offer to answer them for them. For example, “I noticed that you procrastinated while writing your report. Is that the area you need assistance with?” This not only shows your interest but also asks for their input.
3. Go out of your way
Try to be as flexible as possible when helping them achieve a goal, no matter how small. Even if it seems silly or insignificant in the long run, you’re always reminding them of how much you believe in them. For example, if they ask you to bring one book back from the library, and that book happens to be on the same street where the new store your company wants to check out is located, buy it and drop it off at their desk.
4. Show you care about your employees’ success
When people know that their boss cares about them, they will feel happier and more motivated to do well at work. This can lead to increased productivity and fewer problems.
5. Create a positive outlook
A good supportive manager thinks positively and this gets passed on to his employees. Your positive outlook makes you and your team more hopeful about the future and more successful at work.
6. Encourage teamwork
Teamwork comes naturally when employees are happy in the workplace and know that their boss is concerned about them. This will lead to greater coordination, communication, cooperation, and camaraderie among your team members. They will also want to work harder so that everyone can succeed together.
As with anything in life, there are always multiple ways to solve a problem. This is true when it comes to managing your employees. Good managers know that there are various ways of inspiring their employees to do better; so much, that it doesn’t even have to be about money and pay raises. A good supportive manager is also an engaging leader, they understand the importance of their employees’ skills, and thoughts about their employees and use them to utilise in the best effective way for business growth and success.