Whether a seasoned manager or a newbie, some issues crop up again and again. Obviously, it’s a good idea to have some strategies to tackle them, so what are these recurrent problems and what can managers do to resolve them?
Can’t see the wood for the trees
One common problem for managers is a lack of overview. In other words, he or she may know what they are trying to achieve and how they are going to get there, but become so bogged down in processes and the constituent parts of the project that they lose track of progress. Very often these managers also micro-manage.
Fortunately, this is one of the easiest problems for managers to solve, although it takes a healthy dose of self-discipline. Firstly, the manager must take a step back and clarify, in their own mind, what the overarching aim is and then, what processes will lead to achieving it. This demands some form of project tracking and monitoring, ideally one that is flexible and integrated with other crucial business functions, such as Cloud ERP. Secondly, it is necessary to learn to stop micro-managing. If a manager can learn to treat employees like responsible adults they will almost certainly respond with improved performance. Respect is one of the best motivators available to management.
Have a clear vision and communicate it
This is closely linked to the previous point. Too many managers know what they are trying to achieve, but fail to tell the people who are actually doing the work; they then wonder why progress stalls. Shared business process software is ideal for solving this problem; workers can monitor the progress of their own and sometimes other projects and see how everything fits together. Communication is also vital; if a business does not have a dedicated department, it falls to managers to make sure their team knows what they are supposed to achieve, how they are supposed to achieve it and how everything is progressing. In such cases, a little training in employee engagement can pay huge dividends in terms of output and success. Disengaged employees are in their job for the pay and nothing else, which can severely limit their productivity.
Challenge bad behavior
Sooner or later, all managers have to tackle bad behavior. Whether it is employees constantly making personal phone calls in work time, conflict between individuals or simple under-performance, all managers have to deal with these issues. Conflict resolution training is widely available and a worthwhile investment. Managers must, however, take care to model the behavior they require from their team and create an environment that nurtures the traits they want to see. If a manager berates their team there is no point in them complaining when members of that team raise their voices at each other; the manager simply will not be taken seriously.
Finally, however stressful business life becomes, managers should take time for their team and remember that everyone is human. Few managers are remembered for their iron control of budgetary allocations or wonderful ways with spreadsheets; instead, it is the mangers who have nurtured talent and inspired success that linger in the memory.