The responsibilities and expectations of managers are significant. Many, including the organization’s shareholders, employees, customers, and the authorities, look to the manager to make things happen and to ensure that they happen correctly. Managers therefore have to apply a great degree of skill and right principles in successfully executing their assignments. Here are some tips that I have found useful in my management and leadership experience:
1) Setting Clear Goals: Success begins with the establishment and execution of a clear set of goals. This principle holds true in our personal lives as well as in our organizational leadership. Recognize and appreciate the link between your personal goals and organizational objectives. The more you effectively contribute to achieving organizational objectives, the more you will attain personal success and goals through increased income and promotion.
2) Delegation: The purpose of a manager is to achieve results through directing and guiding the work activities of other people in the organization. To be successful as a manager you therefore need to be clear on what needs to be done and who is responsible or best suited to carry out the task. Many of us are first recognized for our technical competence and ability, which then opens doors for us to be given opportunities in management roles. A number of people face challenges in releasing the work to others, but it’s important to learn and master the art of delegation because it is paramount to the success of any manager. The process of allocating work, directing and guiding execution will help your staff to improve their skills and grow in their careers while freeing you to do more planning and leading, resulting in further team success.
3) Developing your Management Skills: As kids we are all filled with great curiosity and a need to learn. Sadly, as people grow older, many lose this wonderful characteristic. Once people reach certain positions and authority it’s tempting to think they know it all. I have heard it said ‘What got you here won’t get you there’. Be open to and seek new opportunities to learn so as to improve the value of your contribution and remain upwardly mobile. Identify new skills that you would like and need to develop, and then draw up a plan outlining how and when you will achieve these goals.
4) Developing People: We all need to learn new skills or improve on existing ones in some areas of life, including our work. The surest way to increase production within your business is to develop people – increasing productivity of your team reduces the need for increased staff recruitment. You can develop people by sharing your knowledge and experience as well as inspiring them to undertake self-development courses and professional training. There are many opportunities for training people including orientation for new job responsibilities, new procedures, and introduction of new technologies.
5) Building your Team: An organization with hardworking and committed staff can still fail if they are not working as a unified team. Managers need to take diverse groups of people and build integrated and productive teams. The manager is like the captain of a sports team. He or she needs to call the game plan and tactics to get everyone acting in unison so as to achieve the common goal and agenda.
It’s worth remembering that we become managers because we want to become successful and because in its quest for success the organization identifies us as people who have the skills and ability to make their aspirations to be successful a reality. Both these agendas, ours and that of the organization, are of great importance and deserve our best attention. I hope the above practices, which have been of immense contribution to my success as a manager and executive, will be of help to you in propelling your leadership experience.