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Jake Manuel
Marketing Project Manager
May 27, 2021

Develop Managers to Cultivate a High Performing Team 

Managers – they have been around since time began to, well, manage. 

But what does that word “managing” really imply? 

Does it mean simply ordering people around and waiting passively for deliverables and the output? 

Or is there more to it?

Why Manager Effectiveness Is Important

In the past, there was a misconception that managers have the right to “command” people. Some managers would see themselves as “above” their employees in overseeing the projects and other deliverables that needed to be done. 

While some managers still have this mentality, there is a new way to make sure things get done. Not only that, this new effective team management approach produces happy, engaged, and productive employees. The best part is that this approach guarantees an improved and better bottom-line for the company. 

So, why is manager effectiveness important? 

Because many managers or “people with power” tend to forget this one vital thing – a manager manages people 

Yes, tasks are important to manage, but it is the collaborative work of well-managed individuals that makes completion of tasks possible. When a team has an effective manager who knows how to handle people the “right” way, the company’s earnings become 147% higher, on average, than that of the competition. 

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How to Be an Effective Manager 

According to research laid out in the book A Great Place to Work For All, effective leaders who deliberately and purposefully build trust examine these three things: 

  • Working with teams  
  • Recognizing team members 
  • Inspiring employees 

As we dive into each attribute, we also recognize the essential traits that result in effective leadership and management. 

1. Work with Teams

Relate: To build trust and establish good relations, you need to learn how to relate to your employees. Do not be afraid to ask probing questions. More importantly, learn the art of listening – not listening to respond but listening to understand. 

You should strive to be a “master of conversation” by improving the quality and quantity of your conversations with team members. Constant communication creates a transparent environment that helps build trust and reflects your integrity as a leader. 

Innovate: Be an “innovation starter” and an “innovation nourisher” as you aim to move your company forward. Encourage and welcome all ideas, opinions, and suggestions. Test new discoveries, revise them as necessary, and be bold enough to implement them if everything pans out. 

Do not look down on someone for voicing an opinion that is not well thought out. This could result in resentment that would discourage people from speaking their minds moving forward.

2. Recognize Employees

Acknowledge: Let your employees know that they are important and that they matter regardless of their job description or the tasks they do. Make this a ritual – you can never go wrong by appreciating people. 

Celebrate victories no matter how small they are. Recognize and reward the hard work and integrity of your team members publicly. Remember to be consistent about verbal recognitions to avoid the dangerous potential team gossip of bias and favoritism. 

Coach: Know your employees – their strengths and triggers – and pave the way for their growth. The best managers focus on the future. That’s why preparing and developing future leaders should be one of your primary roles. Coaching and managing a team is never a one-size-fits-all approach. Each individual is unique, and therefore coaching each person requires a different, customized approach. 

Coaching your employees to be the best they can be as you help them hone their skills creates interdependence on your team. Each team member will build appreciation for what the others can do and complement each other’s skills. Great managers eliminate the “I” mentality and cultivate teams with complementary strengths.

3. Inspire Employees

Energy: Positivity is contagious. It motivates and inspires team members, which results in increased creativity, better collaboration, and more remarkable problem-solvers. 

Show your passion and authenticity as you help your employees see the desired outcome while being realistic about understanding the actions to take to get there. Know when to provide an encouraging message or when to give a comforting tip. Affirm your team and strive to be the light that guides them every step of the way until you have reached your milestone. 

Thrive: Be the example you want your employees to follow. Your team members are not the only ones who need to grow. It is crucial that you, as the manager, also thrive – re-energize and look after your well-being if you want to stay productive and satisfied with what you do. The company should provide the tools, training, and resources you need to grow as an individual and learn effective team management techniques. 

Be mindful of the types of messages you feed your mind. A positive mindset triggers positive emotions and positive actions. While showing compassion to your team members is a key factor in relating with them, showing compassion to yourself is also important to stay healthy mentally, emotionally, and physically. Connect with others and make sure to surround yourself with people who support you. 

Not Commanders but Servant-Leaders 

Managers – they are not the commanders they may have once perceived to be.  

Managers who manage effective teams are servant leaders who are not distant and disinterested but are hands-on and very much interested not only in the progress of their employees’ tasks but also in the lives of each individual on the team. 

Effective managers are not born. They are developed.  

A high-performing team is not created by putting together a bunch of skilled people and leaving them to work by themselves. It is cultivated by effective managers who know how to work with teams, recognize team members, and inspire employees.

Churchill Leadership Group is a seasoned and trusted partner for building the soft skills your leaders need. Learn more about our Leader as Great Coach program, where leaders at all levels in your organization develop coaching capabilities, like asking powerful questions, that enable better conversations for more growth and productivity across your organization.

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About Jake

Jake has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and is currently working towards completing his Juris Doctor Degree. As an educator, he has a passion for teaching and learning. Between work and law school, he enjoys taking online courses such as Fundamentals of Project Planning and Management, Entrepreneurial Strategic Management, and International Organizations Management. He also volunteers his time for community outreach and education programs for local and international organizations.

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