How to be a Great Manager/Leader

The past month has been very busy! If you are like me, you love it when you are really busy. The great part of this past month, I have been able to connect and re-connect with lots of folks. The “what have you been up to” question happened often. It sparks so much more… From many of those discussions comes today’s blog topic…

I was asked a couple of times, “what advice would you give to new managers?” and “what experience or advice can you share with me to help me become a better manager?” When you are in the middle of a discussion, it is hard to completely put down a complete picture of what advice that would be. I shared a few items that I thought were important. I also told them that this is a great topic that I wanted to put into my blog later on.

Here comes those 4 items that I believe that will make you a better manager/leader. It is the one piece of advice that I wish that I had gotten when I first became a newbie supervisor.

  1. Goal Clarification: The only way to be an effective leader is to set goals and communicate those goals to your team. Sounds simple. I like to involve my team in setting goals. There are two ways to accomplish this task. You can do a staff meeting and dedicate time with the complete team to set the goals together. The second approach is to meet individually with each team member and discuss goals and direct of the team. Get input from every member and roll that into one clear direction. Communicate to your team. Seek clarity from team. Move forward together.
  2. Build Relationships: Getting to know you team is extremely important. Building trust can go a long way to making you an effective leader. Spend time asking questions and listening to each team member. You can learn so much.
  3. Develop Your Strategy (and Share it): After you have established your goals, the team is waiting to see your next actions. Here is where it is up to you to articulate the strategy on how you and the team are going to accomplish those goals. Again, this is an excellent opportunity for you to ask the team for their thoughts. Making sure that everyone is moving forward on the same page. The big help here is listening to your teams thoughts. They will help you shape your strategy (or at the very least you will understand where they see weakness or fear).
  4. Communicate and Ask for Feedback: Communication is key! Let the team know how everything is going. Give constructive feedback to the goals. Ask for feedback from the team. Working together along the way will make you a better leader in their eyes. No team likes the helicopter manager – that just hovers.

For those experienced managers – what advice would you share with a newbie? Sharing is caring.