Managing a team is hard.
That's why there are thousands of books, courses, classes, and methodologies teaching that exact subject.
Unfortunately, it's a very necessary skill…
Supervision is a critical function of leadership that is often overlooked,” writes Rita Sever in her book “Supervision Matters.” Strelka Institute for Media, Architecture and Design/Flickr
“Supervision is a critical function of leadership that is often overlooked,” writes certified professional coach Rita Sever in “Supervision Matters: 100 Bite-Sized Ideas to Transform You and Your Business.” “Yet the quality of supervision is often what makes or breaks a leader — and an organization.”
It's not uncommon for team management to be an entrepreneur's biggest struggle. And if you haven't been through any proper training, you might not even realize you are doing something wrong.
Here are five checks you can use to review your own performance as a manager and make sure you are doing a good job:
1. You don't bother to give any feedback.
Some supervisors say, “If you don't hear from me, you're doing fine,” Sever writes. The next minute (or so it seems), the employee is fired. Bouncing back and forth between extremes is unhelpful to the supervisee.
There are ways to be direct and constructive as well as tactful when giving feedback as a manager. “Give prompt and specific feedback,” Sever recommends.
Likewise, asking for feedback from your employees can open the door to communication. “Ask your employees how your style of supervision works for them,” recommends Sever. “Do not defend. Do not argue. Just listen,” she writes.
2. You let things go.
If an employee asks for guidance, you blow it off by saying you'll get to it but really decide you're too busy to follow up, Sever writes.
3. You don't meet with your employees one-on-one except for their reviews.
By meeting with employees one-on-one only during annual evaluations, bad managers “think this will make it seem really special,” writes Sever. But really, managers should be meeting one-on-one with their supervisees regularly to give them feedback and to be available for questions and guidance.
Sever recommends starting small if you've been having trouble meeting with employees. Ten minutes per week to start can be useful, and by scheduling the meeting ahead of time, you're both held accountable. “As important as keeping the meeting is making it two-way,” Sever writes. “This is not a ten-minute lecture. Listen at least as much as you talk.”
4. You make it clear your employees work for you.
You remind your employees of this every day by looking down on them or giving orders. But a good supervisor works in partnership with their coworkers, including their supervisees, rather than acting as an authoritarian.
5. You make it hard for employees to talk to you or brainstorm ideas.
Bad managers “believe that ‘If you give them an inch, they'll take a mile.' And it all starts when you listen to them — even for a minute,” writes Sever. On the contrary, meetings are essential and communication is the key to a productive work relationship. One way to make team meetings more welcoming and open to discussion and contributions from all employees is to open with an icebreaker or a quick game. “Spending two to three minutes at the start of your team meetings on something lighthearted is worth its weight in gold,” writes Sever.
Read more at BusinessInsider.com
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