7 Things That Set Great Managers Apart

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There’s nothing better than having a good boss. Imagine heading to the office every day with the support and motivation to nail the working day.

Employees who feel like they have a great manager tend to be more engaged at work and therefore more productive. So happier workers mean better businesses outcomes for you.

On the flip side, employees who feel underappreciated or undermanaged by their managers, don’t tend to perform as well and your business’s staff retention rate will likely be at risk.

What every workplace, therefore, needs in order to jump from strength to strength is a great manager.

So, what sets the best managers apart from the rest?

Take a look at these 7 traits and actions to see what you’re already doing as a manager, and how you can improve.

Great managers hire the right people

When managing a business, it is essential that you can trust your employees and believe in their abilities. Managers should take time with their recruitment process to ensure that the right people are employed, rather than simply trying to recruit someone for the role as quickly as possible.

When the wrong person is hired for a job, it’s inevitable that productivity will decrease and another recruitment process will follow.

It’s not just the qualifications and experience that recruiters should look out for, either. Great managers will evaluate a potential employee’s compatibility with the rest of the team. Sometimes the right person isn’t just the person with the best resume, but the less qualified person with a great personality.

It’s no secret that recruitment is a long, arduous process – especially when you have a huge number of other tasks to do. As such, great managers won’t just focus on hiring the right person for the job, but also hire the right people to recruit that right person.

Outsourcing HR is a great way to hand over the responsibility to others – giving you the time to really think about what you want in the perfect candidate, while also managing the workload of the team who are currently a man down.

Great managers know their staff personally

There’s nothing worse than a manager that sits in their office and manages from the sidelines.

The best managers get involved and get to know their staff. Without understanding each individual’s needs and what management style works best for them, managers can easily lose the respect of their team.

Getting to know your staff will also help you understand each person’s strengths and weaknesses and use these to benefit the business. Where one employee struggles, another will excel – meaning it’s much more efficient to work to people’s strengths.

Great managers create positivity

They say laughter is the best medicine and attitudes are contagious. Good managers will ensure that they are at the forefront of a positive working environment. It’s important that managers maintain positivity and hide their pessimism about projects. That way, the workforce will continue to feel motivated to reach their objectives.

Positivity doesn’t need to just be work related either. Creating a positive workplace with praise, celebrations and compliments is a great way to make staff feel appreciated and more positive in the office.

Great managers foster good communication

As with any relationship in life, communication is key. Even with workplace hierarchies, managers should aim to be a voice for their team, rather than a superior. Employees should feel like their views and suggestions are appreciated and this can only be done with good communication.

Great managers create a working environment that encourages staff to speak openly and honestly.

Great managers aren’t afraid of hard work

It can often feel like managers sit back in their office while their teams work hard for little credit. The best managers will not only show their appreciation for their staff, but also aren’t afraid to get into the trenches when needed.

Managers have worked hard to get to where they are, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to put the brakes on and forget the little guys. You should always be setting an example for staff and getting your hands dirty to help out with the workload is the best way to do it.

Where employees and managers work together, businesses can seamlessly adapt to any crisis.

Great managers give credit

When meeting with stakeholders and directors, managers provide a voice for their teams. But great managers will also give credit to all the right people, rather than pretend they did the work alone.

Employees who feel valued and appreciated by the managers will continue to give the same energy until they no longer feel it is noticed. If someone doesn’t feel like their hard work is being noticed, what incentive do they have to continue?

The best managers make sure to give credit to their employees when working with superiors, while also showing their appreciation to their staff regularly.

Great managers stand by their team

Managers who allow their staff to be thrown under the bus are far from great managers. Employees should feel safe to speak up and share ideas without having to deal with repercussions if things don’t go so well. Most decisions will be made as a team and if things go wrong, great managers will take responsibility and maintain integrity, not single out their employees.

Final thoughts

A Gallup report in 2014 found that just 10% of people have the skills and traits needed to effectively manage people in a way that significantly benefits their company. They also found that 2 in 10 people could ever be trained to be high-performing, great managers. Combined, natural-born managers and those who can be trained contribute to profit increases of around 48%.

Pretty powerful stats.

It goes to show just how important hiring – or training – great managers is. Those that will empower their team into greatness; those that can make tough decisions when needed, without jeopardizing their staff; those that put others before them are the secret to any business’s success.

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