Getting into management is something many people aspire to do but very few actually manage to pull off effectively. It’s actually a lot harder than many people appreciate and takes a certain set of skills.
As a manager, you’re no longer ‘one of the gang’ and although you may be compensated by a higher salary and other perks, management is not for everyone. As many managers the world over have discovered, there’s a fine line between being revered and respected. Do you have what it takes to be a good manager?
We consulted with various industry professionals from all walks of business life to find the answer. Here are the questions you need to ask yourself…
Can You Self Motivate?
A good manager can’t motivate others if they can’t motivate themselves. You need that sense of drive to be able to get yourself going before you can inspire and lead your troops. This can be especially hard if things aren’t going your way or decisions come ‘from the top’ which you disagree with. But a good manager will be able to find that inner drive and lead their team with confidence, direction, and enthusiasm.
Are You Dependable?
As a manager, your word needs to be your bond. If you say you’re going to do something, you need to do it. If you’re late for work, forget meetings or fail to return calls you are not a good manager. Your team needs to be able to rely on you. Do what you say you’re going to do, when you say you’re going to do it.
Are You Confident?
You need to be able to make decisions with confidence. Confidence is contagious and will help inspire your team. If you are the type of person who is always second guessing themselves, perhaps management isn’t for you.
Are You Flexible?
In order to manage effectively, a certain amount of flexibility is needed. Circumstances in business, in people’s personal lives and in the economic climate itself will change and be out of your control. You need to be able to deal with whatever changes are thrown at you. Being flexible is an art as far as leadership is concerned. You have to know when you need to stick to your guns and when to retreat or change course.
Do You Have Integrity?
Your staff will only trust you if you have integrity. They need to know that you will fight for them, do what you say you will do and that you follow the rules. There are no exceptions. Integrity is everything. If a member of staff tells you something personal, under no circumstances can you ever betray their trust; if you engage in gossip or partake in the rumor mill, then management is not for you.
Can You Delegate?
Many people have the attitude of: “If I don’t do it myself, it doesn’t get done properly” and they think this is a good thing. Wrong. It is your job to be able to delegate and teach your subordinates how to do the job properly. As an effective manager, you can’t be doing everything, you need to be able to release tasks to others and trust that they will get done. If they are not done to your standards, you need to train team members effectively.
Can You Also Get ‘Stuck In’?
If there’s a town carnival or a charity event for example, where your company is making itself present, you also need to be able to roll your sleeves up and be one of the gang for the day. This is one time when you can’t just delegate a job away. If everyone else is giving up a Saturday afternoon to represent the company, then you need to be there too.
Do You Stay Up to Date with Technology / Social Media?
As an effective manager, you need to be active on social media, particularly Linkedin. In fact, you should be on all the relevant business forums and stay up to date with industry news and events. However, your personal profiles (Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram… etc.) need to be squeaky clean. If there are photos of you skinny dipping in Magaluf in 2005, delete, delete, delete. Or at least make sure all your personal social media accounts are set to private. A little bit of detail about your life gives your social media presence personality. Too much detail, or the wrong kind, is harmful. If in doubt, leave it out.
Are You Sociable?
To be a good manager you need to be somewhat sociable. You can’t just hide behind your computer screen or in a far away office. You need to get to know your employees and mingle professionally. However, don’t try and be everyone’s best friend. Remember, it’s sometimes lonely at the top / in management. You need to be okay with this.
Are You Honest?
Honesty is important in management whether you’re letting someone know if they’re doing something wrong, you’re holding up your hands when you make a mistake or you’re simply saying: “I’m too busy to do this now.” You need to be a straight shooter.
Do You Demonstrate Maturity?
Good managers are able to regulate their emotions. If they feel frustrated or angry they know it’s best to go for a walk. They don’t overreact or lose their cool in the workplace.
Are You Able to Develop Talent?
Can you get the right people in the right roles at the right time? Great managers do this through the encouragement of mentorship opportunities and the implementation of a proactive plan for addressing career development interests, needs, and desires. Great managers care about the future as much as they care about the present for both the business, themselves and their employees.
If you can answer yes to all (or even most of these) questions, you have all the qualities businesses are looking for in their management teams. Put that application in and land the job you deserve. You’ll make a great manager!