Earlier, we did a Letterman-like top ten list - How To Tell If You Are Management Material. Here are some key skills and abilities that help anyone be a better manager.
Need For Good Managers IncreasingThe need for good managers is not going away. It is intensifying. With flatter organizations and self-directed teams becoming common; with personal computers and networks making information available to more people more quickly; the raw number of managers needed is decreasing. However, the need for good managers, people who can manage themselves and others in a high stress environment, is increasing.
I believe anyone can be a good manager. It is as much trainable skill as it is inherent ability; as much science as art. Here are some things that make you a better manager:
As a person:
- You have confidence in yourself and your abilities. You are happy with who you are, but you are still learning and getting better.
- You are something of an extrovert. You dont have to be the life of the party, but you cant be a wallflower. Management is a people skill - its not the job for someone who doesnt enjoy people.
- You are honest and straight forward. Your success depends heavily on the trust of others.
- You are an includer not an excluder. You bring others into what you do. You dont exclude other because they lack certain attributes.
- You have a presence. Managers must lead. Effective leaders have a quality about them that makes people notice when they enter a room.
On the job:
- You are consistent, but not rigid; dependable, but can change your mind. You make decisions, but easily accept input from others.
- You are a little bit crazy. You think out-of-the box. You try new things and if they fail, you admit the mistake, but dont apologize for having tried.
- You are not afraid to do the math. You make plans and schedules and work toward them.
- You are nimble and can change plans quickly, but you are not flighty.
- You see information as a tool to be used, not as power to be hoarded.
Take a look at yourself against this list. Find the places where you can improve and then get going. And , if you need help, remember that's what this site is all about - Helping new managers get started and experienced managers get better.