Leading from the Front: Are Great Managers Born that Way or Can You Develop the Right Skills?
A great manager is an asset to any team. However, a manager also needs to be a leader to benefit the business. Understanding the similarities and differences between these two roles is crucial. Furthermore, companies need to know how to transform a manager into a leader and vice versus. Fortunately, this is easier than many believe it is. It’s simply a matter of knowing what steps to take to achieve this goal.
Finding the Right Talent
Companies need to ensure they fill open positions with the right person. Those responsible for hiring should look at the goals of the organization and determine which talents and skills are needed to fill a particular role. For instance, a manager needs to delegate tasks before the leader can encourage individual employees to work together on these tasks to achieve the desired goal. Knowing who is best able to handle these tasks will make life easier in every way. A great way to learn more about a candidate for an open position is to make use of executive assessments. Learn more about these assessments by checking out leadershipall.com
Manager or Leader?
Managers work to train employees and provide the tools needed to be successful and productive. They oversee the infrastructure of the organization to make this possible. Employees look to the manager as an authority figure and a person to turn to when help is needed. The manager is also responsible for monitoring, tracking, and focusing on structures and systems across the organization.
In contrast, leaders work to inspire and motivate team members. They encourage employees to work together and remain committed to a common goal. With the right leader, every person on the team feels they are empowered. Furthermore, leaders encourage growth and learning while mentoring team members.
Whether a person is asked to take on a management role, a leadership role, or both, having a mentor to turn to for assistance is of great benefit. With the help of a mentor, the individual learns their new responsibilities and what is expected of them in this role. An easy way to do this is to allow the person to shadow someone in a similar position for a few days or weeks. Encourage communication throughout this process.
The employee taking on new duties needs to feel comfortable to share any concerns they may have or ask when there is a gap in their knowledge. This support is crucial during the transition period. It allows the employee to assume these new duties with confidence.
One thing a mentor can be of help with is showing the employee how to look at not only the task at hand but also the big picture. Managers often look at each task and lay one brick at a time. In contrast, the architect focuses on the big picture and how the project will look when completed. When one person can do both, they are better able to lead their team and manage the various aspects of a project to ensure it is completed in a timely manner.
Collaboration among Managers and Leaders
Set aside a time for individuals with similar positions to meet regularly. This provides all with an opportunity to discuss any concerns they have, any problems they are experiencing, and successes in their area. The environment in these meetings needs to be constructive and open to encourage open communication. Furthermore, the goal of these meetings needs to be the improvement of the organization in different areas.
Business owners find sitting in on these meetings is very enlightening. This is a great time to see how each employee is developing in their role and where changes need to be made. Additionally, it becomes easier to see if someone needs additional training and if there is a deficiency in training for new responsibilities. For instance, if every new manager taking part in these meetings raises similar concerns, the training needs to be changed to ensure this information is shared early in the process. With these meetings, employees can grow and develop together and form strong bonds as they see they are all working together as a team for the betterment of the company.
Provide Ongoing Training
Times change and new skills may be needed even for those who have been in a management or leadership role for years. For this reason, every company needs to offer ongoing training for employees at all levels. The best way to achieve the desired goals is to determine what skills are needed, set goals for each skill, and provide a way for each employee to reach these goals.
The employee is then able to develop new skills while retaining the ones they already possess. They are adding to the toolbox they rely on in the day-to-day operations of the business. This process needs to begin before the employee takes on the new duties and continue throughout the person’s career. A person is never too old to learn new things.
Furthermore, employees respect leaders who engage in ongoing training. They see that the leader or manager recognizes he or she still has things to learn. As a result, employees are more inclined to take part in optional training. They realize that doing so is of benefit to them and can help them advance in their careers as well. Leaders and managers need to be role models for those under them, and this is a great way to do so.
Some individuals are natural leaders. Others are born managers. However, with the right training, people can take on both roles with ease. One thing to keep in mind is the personality of the individual. Certain men and women simply don’t like taking on the role of this type. Don’t force them to do so. Take the time to get to know candidates for an open position to ensure you find the right fit. With a variety of tools available to those in charge, doing so has never been easier. Benefit from them today to see great results in your organization.