We talk about great managers we’ve known, and great leaders too. People that are amazing role models to us and people we aspire to emulate.
I do a lot of work with the Management Excellence Community (MEC)) and the Management Excellence Leadership Team (MELT) – remember I did some video clips for the MELT last time I was in Seattle. We’ve been talking about some of the things that we think makes a good, and a great manager so I thought I’d share some tips about what I think makes a good manager and the sort of manager I’d like to have:
1: Transparency. Why cover things up and not tell your team the truth. Wherever possible, tell them everything you can and don’t leave them in the dark. They’ll work things out – they’re not daft and they will become concerned about what you’re hiding.
2: Communication. Talk to your team. properly. Have good quality of communication and talk to them often. It stops misunderstandings. If you have a long distance relationship with one of your team, make sure you communicate with them often to make them feel part of the team.
3: Productivity. Don’t push your team too hard. My team often do number 4 from this list of tips for relaxation and have “cake o’clock” At about 3pm the whole team (and anyone else who wants to come along) will go down to one of the cafes and have coffee and cake. All welcome. They get lots of cross team information this way and always come back renewed and energetic (and loud!)
4: Problems. This is what my manager says “Bring me bad news early. It rarely improves with age”. Talk problems through with the team – they may have the solution. As you may have the solution for their problem.
5: Empathy. You don’t know where you are when your manager doesn’t have empathy – (is he REALLY genuinely interested in your career) which leads to lack of trust. A great manager can always empathise with your situation – and therefore can truly help you.
6: Stress. Try not to show your stress as you will transmit it to the team and pass it on. Try some tips on finding nature to try to reduce your stress whilst in the office. I try to walk round the lake on my own whilst my stress levels subside. Or I go to the gym and punish the cross trainer.
7: Happiness. it’s infectious. I’d hate to work for a miserable manager, and I’d like to think I’m cheerful too. I follow 3,5,10,14,40, 45 and 49 of these tips to help the team feel happy, appreciated and cheerful.
So I’m at only 7 tips again. What do you think makes a good manager, and what would you want from a great manager?