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How to be a better manager today


Being a manager is a difficult task. Managing people involves skills of being able to work well with others while having a working technical knowledge of the business operations, performance and areas of needed improvement. Managers are paid more because of the different roles that they are required to play. With that responsibility comes an added expectation to be a better manager today than you were yesterday.

In Machiavelli's written work entitle, "The Prince" an interesting and provoking thought is raised concerning what leadership type is best: to rule with love or by fear. The socially acceptable answer may be to manage your team with love. But if you have ever been a manager you know that you have to lay down the law sometimes and assert your authority as the manager. There are times when individuals will need to be fired from your team. These employees would hardly view these types of acts as acts of love. So where is your balance as a manager? Do you think that you could use a little re-evaluation of the way that you work so that you can be a better manager? If you are opened to making a few constructive changes then here are some suggestions of how to be a better manager today.


Get your hands dirty. Employees have a hard time respecting managers when the employee does not feel like his manager knows what it is like to work his job. This is why it is so important for managers to have an active interest in the concerns of each employee's specific job responsibilities. If you as the manager have worked in this employees position in the past give them some advice on how you handled those responsibilities. If you cannot relate to your employees frustrations because you have not worked in their job before, try doing to today. You may find an area under your management that could use improvement. Not only would you have an opportunity to solve inefficiency in the business but you would have shown your employee that you are willing to work with him to improve his working conditions by getting into his shoes and doing what is best for your employees.

Lead by example. In many cases it is the manager that determines the mood of the office. If the manager is not serious about his job then the employees are much less likely to be serious about theirs. As a manager, you cannot expect your employees to be confined to doing a certain task without breaks if you are not willing to do the same thing. Employees who are treated as inferiors tend to care less about "doing their best" or "trying their hardest." Make the environment for your employees as pleasant as you would like your own environment to be. Don't be a hypocrite. Do not expect actions that you yourself are not willing to take part in.

Motivate and encourage good/hard work. As superficial as it may sound encouraging your employees is an essential part of being an effective manager. Even the most exciting job in the world can loose its appeal if no one were there to validate that your hard work was well worth the result or to give you compliments for what you had done at work that day. Motivation and encouragement should always be sincere. If you find yourself always following a compliment with a "but..." then you know that you are not really showing sufficient appreciation. Most every person can benefit from a sincere "thank you" or "job well done." An act of kindness is not a sign of weakness or submission it is the sign of a good manager.

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