Are You an Effective Manager?

The title of manager in a goal most people in the work place strive for, unfortunately many times the wrong people are put in those positions. A manager should have certain qualities, not promoted because they are cozy with the higher ups or because they may fill a quota for the company. These are in my opinion five qualities a manager should have.

The most important skill a manager possesses is the ability to communicate. If you are unable to get your point across or give your employees direction then your team will not be very effective at doing their job. One of the first things a manager should learn is how to talk to their employees. Being able to explain what you need to accomplish and how to do it can be tougher than most people realize. This is where knowing at least some background about the people that work for you comes in handy. For example you would not use the same vocabulary with a collage grad that you would with a high school drop out or someone who speaks English well verses someone who is just learning the language. Communication no matter type of business your in is important. It really is true that you can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. If you ask and than thank your employees for a job well done. They will work faster and do a better job for you than they would if you bark orders at them and ignore or belittle them.

The next quality you should work on is being knowledgeable of your position. What I mean by this is that you should be properly trained to take on the position you have been placed in. Nothing made me feel more inadequate than one of my employees coming to me with a question or problem about my department or store and I didn’t have a answer for them. I’m not saying that you should know everything on your first day but you should have a good foundation to start with. It is up to you as to how much you know about your job. Just keep in mind that your employees look up to you, they expect you to know more than they do or for you to be able to get the answers they need. Nothing loses a manager respect faster than the appearance of ignorance especially if you don’t show any effort to learn.

The third strength you should develop is to be able to teach and train the employees below you. Being able to develop your team is the best way to show your abilities. Your job as a manager is to make your store or department the best your capable of making it. Training and especially cross training is the best way to success. The more your team members are taught the easier it is to run things smoothly. An example is: You have three servers and one cook scheduled at your restaurant. The cook calls out sick. If you had cross trained your staff than one of your servers could cook and your restaurant can continue to take care of your customers. Developing your staff will make your job easier in the long run, it also make the staff feel better about themselves. By the time you are finished training one of your staff they should be able to everything that their potential allows. If you have a full staff that is capable of doing your job then you have trained your staff properly.

The fourth skill is essential to any good manager. Being able to multi task should be a prerequisite to becoming a manager. When in the role of leader you have got to be capable of doing multiple things at one time. A manager only has so many hours in a day to complete their tasks. During that time you will not only have to deal with your daily tasks you’ll have to talk to customers and deal with any problems that may come up. Being able to deal with multiple tasks at one time helps to get you through your day. The only way to learn this skill is to attempt it. Of course it takes a lot of practice and not everyone is capable of multi tasking, some people have to work at one task at a time. Although it would be much more difficult for these people it is not impossible. Delegating some of what you need to do will help ease the amount of work you have to accomplish for the day. However you should not delegate all of you tasks, your staff will notice if you are always standing around doing nothing . You will have a harder time getting your staff to do things for you because they will think that you are just trying to be lazy. Don’t forget when you delegate to ask and thank them when they are done.

The last quality a manager must have to be effective is to enjoy their position and not abuse it. In order for anyone to do their best work they have to enjoy what they are doing. If the only reason you took a position was for the power of the title and you don’t like the job its self not only are you going to be miserable but your staff will be as well. Miserable employees tend to slack off at work, call out a lot ,come in late, and ignore your customers. If you enjoy your work and have fun with the people you work with ,talk, laugh ,have contests, talk to them, help them, listen to what they have to say ect. The work atmosphere you have developed will make the staff want to come to work and do their best. If you take care of your staff they will take care of you! When you come in to work look around see what needs to be done and jump in and help this is a sign of a good manager, to do it and have fun while your at it is the sign of a great manager in the making. Enjoy what you do because if you don’t it just isn’t worth it.