If you asked an employee what the difference was between having a good manager and a bad manager they might say:

A good manager is someone who:

  • Listens to my views
  • Is a good role model
  • Is concerned about their team and the individuals within it

Whereas a poor manager is someone who is

  • Task orientated
  • A ‘teller’
  • Over controlling
  • The ‘expert’
  • Concerned about themselves

Good managers earn their employees trust by doing what they say, demonstrating their competence and showing you that they care.  A poor manager might know all the latest theories, and talk a ‘good game’, but they fail because their behaviour is incongruent with what they say.

But why do some people become good managers and others do not?  Invariably the issue is that they have not developed the necessary skills and behaviours because they have not had any formal management training or development.  Too often people are promoted into management positions but are not given the right support and development to fulfil their role adequately.

In the absence of any guidance, the newly promoted manager may stick to do what he or she knows best, (i.e. their old job), and they simply remain ‘doers’ focussed on the task and not their people.

It is essential therefore that newly appointed managers and team Leaders are given the appropriate management development and support to give them every possible chance of success.  This support should help them to understand the importance and development of appropriate behaviours such as:

  • Integrity – Leading by example.
  • Confidence – The appropriate self awareness and display of self belief.
  • Influence – The ability to encourage others to follow, to lead by example as well as by persuasion.
  • Communication –. Ability to listen and understand others.  Ability to be understood by others both, verbally & in writing.
  • Challenge – Not accepting the status quo.  Taking on the difficult things, and encouraging others to do so.
  • Collaboration – Working effectively with other people, their team, peers and boss.
  • Flexibility – Adjusting and adapting to changing circumstances. Learning from mistakes as well as successes.
  • Growth – Learning, developing themselves and others.
  • Motivation – Ability to get others to want to do the things that need to be done.

Providing the right type of support and management development will not guarantee success for a newly appointed manager, but it will increase the likelihood of them being successful and prevent them from starting off on the ‘wrong foot’.