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What Is A Manager?

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Corporate businessmen having casual meeting
Klaus Vedfelt/ Riser/ Getty Images

In the most basics terms, a manager is a person who helps others others get more done.

A manager helps others get more done by:

  • motivating them
  • providing directions
  • making sure they are working together toward a common goal
  • removing roadblocks and
  • providing feedback.

The Beginning Manager

At the beginning, a manager may be responsible for a small team or a small project. Usually, a more senior manager will watch over his or her work. The manager will be expected to learn the strengths and weaknesses of the team members, lay out the teams goals, assign work to each member to help to reach that goal, provide them the tools they need, and motivate them to do their part.

Money Management

A beginning manager usually has limited responsibility for money issues and little authority to approve or make expenditures. He or she probably must review and approve timesheets for their employees and may have authority to approve expense accounts within specific guidelines.

Goals and Planning

The goals typically are set for a beginning manager by someone higher up. The manager then develops the plans to achieve them. He or she provides feedback to their employees as they work to those plans.

Management Skill Development

Managers at all levels must continuously work to develop their skills. At a beginning level, two areas where a manager can focus their skill development are the ability to effectively manage their meetings and developing their own planning tools like a to do list that makes them more effective.

Leadership

Even from the very beginning, it is important to understand the differences between management and leadership. Managers who want to advance their careers will start to develop their leadership skills from the beginning.

Is Management For You?

Ultimately, you have to decide for yourself whether or not you want to be a manager. Here is how to tell if management is right for you and some tips from seasoned managers for new managers.
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