‘The best boss I ever had,’ is a common phrase most of us have either said or heard at some point, but only a few discuss their efforts, in the form of daily interactions and decisions, that allow managers to get the best out of a team and win their fidelity.
So, what do great managers do?
While there are as many management styles as there are managers, one quality sets truly great managers apart from the rest: They discover what is unique about each person and then capitalize on it.
A great manager should be able to turn an individual’s particular talent into performance. Managers succeed only when they can identify and deploy the differences among people, challenging each teammate to excel in their ways.
Gone are the days when a manager was more like a drill who made sure the job got done. But today, managers are likely to jump right in alongside their team to get the job done being a companion – not just a ‘boss’.
How can a manager effectively ‘manage a team’ and ‘lead by the hand’ in this rapidly changing corporate ecosystem?
Below are four qualities of a Great Manager:
1. A great manager is a good communicator. A manager needs to be clear on every level, and continue the level of communication through frequent feedback and opportunities.
A great manager gives both praise and constructive criticism to the team. Avoids blanket statements and vague generalizations. Also, keeps these conversations and messages private. We often relate communication to speaking, but listening is an equally important component. A manager can show teammates great value by listening to them carefully to what they have to suggest when working together.
2. A great manager is a delegator. We are sound with the phrase ‘team player’ so much today that it has lost its meaning, but, indeed, one cannot effectively manage a group of people if they ‘hog the ball’ by doing everything on their own or at least controlling how it is done. It’s time to turn your thinking around and trust the people you have hired.
3. A great manager is flexible. Today’s millennials value a work-life balance more than any other generation. This new way of thinking does not mean they want to put in fewer hours on the job; it simply means they would like to have some control over those hours. It is advisable to be open to an employee’s need for flexible scheduling for certain projects rather than holding to rigid working hours.
4. A good manager displays integrity. Employees expect more than a paycheck. Employees will be loyal to a manager whom they can trust. Leaders are not those who command others what to do; they follow the same directions as well. Be someone who shows up for meetings on time, who arrives for work early when there is a looming deadline, who attends employee social events, and who shoulders the blame when something goes wrong.
Let’s conclude with a very famous quote here, “Management is about persuading people to do things they do not want to do, while leadership is about inspiring people to do things they never thought they could.” — Steve Jobs.