Top Management Tips

Top Management Tips

It can be said that for a manager, every day is different from the last. A manager is required to perform numerous types of activities and fill different roles within an organization day-to-day and even hour-to-hour. When a person is newly promoted to management position or is simply looking to strengthen their management skills, it is important to look at some of the overarching accountabilities and behaviors of a good manager instead of becoming too focused on the specific roles a manager might play. These skill sets include communication, time management, leading/motivating employees and decision making. Of course these are not the only skills a manager must learn, but some of the more important ones.

Excellent communication skills are absolutely essential for a manager. A manager should be able to communicate with their staff regularly and in a style that fits the subject of the communication. For instance, regular company news can be shared via a newsletter or email, but significant changes should be potentially be discussed in person. Even when presenting or speaking to small groups of people, one should leverage their public speaking skills and make sure that they can be heard by everyone and use the appropriate tools available. This may include a PowePoint presentation or a whiteboard to demonstrate more complex or fine details.

Time management can be a very difficult skill to master, but the best managers are able to not only effectively manage their own time, but can also monitor and manage their employees' time. There are many systems available for time management including Getting Things Done and the Pompodoro Method; but the key to many of these programs is to make a clear list of what needs accomplished and develop time sensitive deadlines. A detailed project or to-do list will also make it easier for a manager to identify items that can be delegated to their team. Having personal and team deadlines will allow for consistent oversight of progress.

Leading and motivating employees is an important tool for most managers. Some people assume that they can lead employees by simply telling them what to do and can motivate only with money. However, there are many other things that should be considered. A true leader rarely simply tells employees what they need to accomplish. A leader will educate subordinates on the overall goals (at a level that is appropriate) and share the intended processes for reaching those goals. This can lead to greater employee buy-in when they understand not just what to do, but why they are doing it. Additionally, good managers will not use a "one-size-fits-all" solution to motivate employees. It is important to understand what drives and motivates a person before attempting to reward them. For instance, one employee may gain great satisfaction from public recognition of their accomplishment and another may be embarrassed by this and would much prefer to be thanked individually, in private.

Many times people can come up with great ideas or solutions for a problem, but when it comes down to it, no one seems to want to make the final decision. This is why the ability to make the tough decisions quickly and based on clear reasoning is another trait found in great managers. Decisions should be based on employee input, when possible, but should most of all be beneficial for the organization as a whole. A good manager will be able to take all the facts present in a given situation and determine what course of action would lead to the best outcome. It is important that managers can document or support their decision making process, as sharing this can sometimes help employees accept the final decision, especially if it is counter to the majority opinion.

icc logo

The Internet Chamber of Commerce Management Training in San Diego and Colorado Springs - Endorsing workplace training & career progression