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You know how to manage your business, but how do you manage your team?
By: Jessica Rickard | December 28, 2020
Being a manager in a company comes with its own set of challenges – one of them being how to manage a whole group of people. And honestly, I think that is something that most people don’t talk about. Not everybody is easy to work with and not everybody is prepared to manage others.
Managing your team is hard enough and now there is the added pressure of managing your team in the middle of a pandemic. Today, we are going to talk about both environments and how to manage your team no matter the situation.
Back to Basics
I think it is important to start from the beginning – how to manage your team. In a normal work environment, how can I make sure my team is happy and performing at the highest level?
Here are some tips to keep in mind:
Communication, Communication, Communication!
Everybody likes to be ‘in-the-know’ about what is going on – especially in their place of work. Keeping your team up to date on what is happening within the company, even if it has nothing to do with them personally, makes them more invested in the business. Of course, there are things that, as the owner or manager, you don’t need to share – and that is okay! Determine what those things are – maybe information about the investors and how much they invested – and set some ground rules with your team. Be upfront with them about what you are willing to share and what you aren’t. It will also be helpful to encourage your team to ask questions, this builds that trust and makes your team feel like they can approach you with questions or concerns they may have.
Build Personal Relationships
When you hire someone to be a part of your team, you are more than likely hiring them because their skill set directly matches with what you need to run your business. While that is a good thing – you need to remember that people have a personal life and personal interests too. It is a good exercise to try and get to know your team on a more personal level, or as personal as you would like Maybe they don’t need to know all about your political or religious views but sharing a few photos of your dog is probably a good idea. Building rapport and culture among your team will make the workplace more fun. Some experts say you spend more time with your co-workers than you do your family, so you may as well enjoy yourself.
Give Credit where Credit is Due
When you constantly hear what a terrible job you are doing, it breaks you down. As a manger it is important to let your team know when they are doing a good job. And this doesn’t have to be a grand gesture, a simple ‘hey good work on this project’ goes a long way. This will build confidence among your team and encourage them to be more involved in the future. Along this same line, it is important to educate your team about what their roles are and what is expected of them. If there is role confusion, you could create frustration within your team which will decrease productivity and morale.
NEWSFLASH: Even though you are the manager, you are also a human being – and your team knows that. They don’t expect you to handle immense pressure with a smile. It is okay to be real with your team. Ask for help, show emotion, and just be yourself. Life happens and more often not in the way we predict. Letting your guard down makes your team feel more comfortable and relaxed when approaching you.
I know I just said that you need to be real, but you also need to be the authority in the room. Your team looks to you for guidance and you need to deliver. You need to do what is best for the company and that comes with making the important decisions. You are the manager for a reason, so step up and lead your team and your business to success.
Delegate Jobs to the Right People
I touched on this a little bit already, but it is crucial to educate your team on their roles and expectations. This is also where knowing your team on a personal level comes in. When you actually know your team, you know what their strengths and weaknesses are and can assign them tasks that play to their strengths and fall in line with their role. If a member of your team feels like they are using their best skills and are contributing to the team as a whole, you build confidence, involvement, and productivity.
Not everything is rainbows and butterflies, and you shouldn’t treat it as such. Sometimes, conflicts arise – this is normal. As the manager, you should address it as soon as you can. If you allow the negative energy to linger in the workplace, everything suffers. If you want to keep productivity and involvement up, you need to address issues as they arise. This becomes easier if you create that environment where your team feels comfortable coming to you with any issues (see build personal relationships tip).
Set a Good Example
Have you heard that saying: ‘monkey see, monkey do’? Your team looks at you as an example, so act like one. The energy and environment that you emit and create becomes the energy and environment your team supports. Make sure you are acting and working the same way you expect your team to.
I know that was a lot, but it is important to create this base environment for your team. Although life is a little different during a pandemic, this is a good place to start.
If your business is still working from home or you are back at the office and practicing social distancing, check out some of these additional tips from the Harvard Business Review. Whether you are an experienced manager or just landed your first management position, these tips are a great start to building a team that is excited to go to work. Marcus Buckingham says “People don’t leave bad companies, they leave bad managers.” So build an environment and a team that communicates, fosters growth both personally and professionally, excites your team, and mitigates conflict when it arises. I bet you see a difference in your team after implementing these tips.
With Path by Simplex, you can manage your team from anywhere! With the Bridge feature acting as your social media feed, you can communicate on the fly wherever you’re at. Send reminders about upcoming deadlines or congratulate your team on a job well done – all in the Bridge! The Bridge is just one aspect of our social financial platform Path and helps you tackle a lot of these team management steps! Find out how else Path can help you connect and collaborate with your team at pathbysimplex.com.