What makes a great manager?
Many organisations make the mistake of promoting people who have good technical skills into management positions – without considering the potential candidates’ management qualities, and what makes a good manager of a team.
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This is a surprising oversight. According to a Gallup poll of more than one million US employees, a bad manager is the number one reason that people leave their job. When the cost of replacing a single member of staff is now over £30,000, it’s more important than ever to consider what makes a good manager and leader – and for managers to work on developing those skills.
Think of a time in the past when you worked at your best… what motivated you?
Generally, people are not motivated by money – instead, it’s a time when they were trusted and were given freedom to do their job their own way. The best managers are those who give their staff that freedom, and instead coach the team to enable them to perform at their best – helping their team to find a solution, rather than telling them what the solution should be.
According to Lazslo Bock, at Google the 8 key qualities of a manager (listed in priority order), are:
- Be a good coach
- Empower your team and don’t micromanage
- Express interest in your team members success and well-being
- Be productive and results-oriented
- Be a good communicator and listen to your team
- Help your employees with career development
- Have a clear vision and strategy for the team
- Have technical skills so you can advise the team
How could you work on these skills?
This month, we will look at ways of giving your staff more trust and freedom, as well as case studies and additional resources that you can use to become a better leader – and a better manager – in your workplace. All of this (and more) is covered in more depth in the Happy Manifesto by Henry Stewart, a free eBook download, and the four day Happy Workplace Leadership Programme.
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- The National Trust and Happy Workplaces, a real-life example of great management
- Are you developing your people or managing them?, an interesting story from Michele Owens of the Olympic Delivery Authority
- Are you a good gardener?, a blog by Zoe Bunter
- 7 things that make great bosses unforgettable, at Forbes