Guest Post: 5 Super Easy Ways to Be a Better Manager Tomorrow
We all qualify managers differently depending on our personal and working needs, but it's probably safe to assume everyone has had a "bad" manager at least once in their career. While you may not be everyone’s favorite manager, you can be a better manager, whether you need to improve communication, reduce micro-managing, or be more available to your employees.
Your management style might not change immediately, but there are several adjustments you can make become a better manager over time.
Use these tips to get better at your job. They're not only good for you they are important to the business and your employees.
1. Use the Golden Rule
If you take a step back and consider your management style from the perspective of your employees, you’ll get an important reality check. When people are put in a position of power they can forget that they were once lower-level employees who struggled, worked long hours, and valued acknowledgement from the higher-ups.
Humility is a great quality to have as a manager because it allows you to recognize that, although you’re in charge, you should still treat everyone equally, which is where the Golden Rule comes into play: treat your employees the way you would want to be treated. Look at situations through their eyes and remember how you might have felt in a similar situation.
This perspective will make you a better manager in no time.
2. Acknowledge Progress
According to a recent poll of 1,000 American adults, the number one fear is personal failure. This fear can lead to a lack of confidence in work. Your employees may have unhealthy thoughts like: "This isn’t right, I just know it" or "My manager never said the project looked good, maybe they didn’t like it." To increase productivity and employee engagement, it is your responsibility as the manage to provide positive feedback, acknowledge employees’ progress/good work, and listen to their concerns.
You are in a perfect position to make sure that your employees have the support and encouragement that leads to progress and improvement.
3. Admit That You’re Human
Sometimes the pressure of being a manager can be overwhelming. Others look to you on a daily basis to lead by example. If you’re constantly obsessing over being perfect, employees will begin to do the same.
This stress can be toxic for the office and morale. According to ComPsych’s 2014 Stress Pulse survey, 42 percent of stressed people lose 15 to 30 minutes of productivity a day and 35 percent lose an hour or more.
Remember, your bandwidth has a limit. Delegate tasks, work to your capacity each day, and let the rest go. As a result, you and your employees will benefit immensely.
4. Listen Carefully
Listening is one of the most important jobs of a manager. Your employees have problems that only you can solve; truly listening to what they need from you will make everyone’s life easier.
It’s important that you also listen to their ideas. Maybe they have new ideas for an upcoming project or maybe it's a new training process that they experienced at another job. In a survey by The Office Club, 12 percent of respondents said that listening was an important quality in a manager:
Employees appreciate when their voices are heard and their opinions are genuinely taken into account. A manager who listens to input with an open mind, then applies this feedback toward improving work performance, will encourage organizational loyalty.
A great method to make sure your employees are heard is to hold regular 1-on-1 meetings with them.
5. Don’t Pick Favorites
Work is work and if you keep work relationships professional, you’ll be less stressed and more effective. It’s easy to show favoritism when certain people on your team are friends or previous coworkers. there’s a fine line between management and employees. It's important that everyone is treated equally.
Level the playing field, because it gives everyone the opportunity to succeed and improve the company as a whole. Before meeting with an employee you consider a friend, remind yourself that this is your job as their manager. This is a manager to employee exchange, not coffee with a friend. If you can master that, you’ll be in a good place.
Jessica Thiefels has been writing for more than 10 years and has five years of experience in the marketing world. She is a professional blogger with published work in Lifehack, Manta, Ms. Career Girl, StartupNation, and more. Follow her on Twitter @Jlsander07.