Managing people might be one of the most difficult skills you’ll ever need to learn, but it can also be one of the most rewarding. Get it right and you’ll have a happy and productive workforce willing to go the extra mile to get things done. Get it wrong and you could face missed deadlines and potentially, even lose staff.
Here are some of the most common blunders managers make, and how to avoid them:
1. They don't communicate
Managers often fail to provide clear directions. Remember, if an employee doesn’t understand exactly what they’re meant to achieve they’ll waste valuable time trying to work out what they’re meant to be doing.
2. They don't listen
Bosses who issue commands from their ivory towers are setting themselves up for a major fall. They miss out on vital information from their staff because they think they’re too grand to keep an open mind and listen.
3. They hire the wrong people
Don’t fall into the trap of hiring people because you mesh well together rather than someone who can do the job. Not only will you end up with an underqualified workforce, but – when you realise your mistake – it might be hard to fire them.
4. They discuss employees behind their backs
If you have an issue with an employee, discuss it with them face-to-face. Under no circumstances should you air your grievances with other staff members behind their back because it will only lead to fear, resentment and dissent.
5. They don’t delegate
No one person can do everything, so stop trying! Share the load with your other team members – that’s what they’re there for – and trust them to do their job without you looking over their shoulders every five minutes.
6. They expect people to share their work passion
Not everyone will love the company as much as a manager will, so don’t expect them to. Be realistic with your expectations and you’ll find you get much better results.
7. They don’t see their staff as people
If you know what makes your staff tick – and you treat them as individuals and not a number – they’ll be more likely to go the extra mile to help achieve your company’s goals.
8. They don’t take responsibility
As the boss, ultimately the buck stops with you. Throwing your employees under the bus if a situation goes pear-shaped will only make you look unprofessional and lose you the respect and trust of your staff.
9. They play favourites
Having obvious ‘teacher’s pets’ will build a toxic atmosphere of resentment, envy, and disillusionment and dampen productivity.
10. They don’t resolve conflicts
If an argument goes past the level of a usual office spat and threatens office harmony – it’s up to the boss to step in and resolve the matter. Ignoring the situation could lead to lost productivity.
Tips for managers in the corporate workforce to avoid mistakes:
- Bosses need to give clear and concise instructions
- Let your employees do their job
- The buck stops with the boss
- Playing favourites will build resentment
Find out what 10 mistakes you might be making and how to fix them.