In most cases, great managers aren’t born with the right skills and proper mindset to lead teams; they hone their capabilities over time, learning what it takes to motivate others, guide effectively, and set employees up for success.
By focusing on the right areas, anyone can improve their performance as a manager. If you’re wondering how, here’s a look at four things great managers do differently and how you can incorporate them into your approach.
1. They Know Themselves
Self-awareness is surprisingly crucial if you want to lead effectively. Along with allowing you to hone in on your strengths, it ensures you acknowledge (and can work to improve) your weaknesses. Additionally, it makes it easier to see how adjusting your approach may be necessary for various situations, such as adapting to your team’s style to boost productivity and build trust.
Often, the first significant step is reflection. Consider your go-to approaches for outlining expectations, delivering feedback, delegating tasks, and handling adversity. Then, factor in how your traditional strategies impact your team, creating opportunities to make adjustments, should they be necessary.
2. They’re Active Listeners
While managing a team often means giving out instructions and making decisions, active listening is a critical skill to hone. It creates opportunities to benefit from the expertise of others. It allows you to factor in new perspectives, ensuring you consider paths that may not occur to you if you rely solely on your experience.
When you focus on what others are sharing – instead of preparing what you’ll say next – you increase your odds of learning valuable information. Further, you’re ensuring your team feels heard and respected by giving their legitimate input consideration before moving forward.
3. They Have Mentors
Reaching the leadership ranks doesn’t mean there’s nothing left to learn. Great managers understand this, so they actively seek opportunities to tap into the expertise of others who’ve been in their shoes.
Having a mentor is one of those opportunities. By connecting with another manager you respect, you can learn from their experience. Plus, you have access to a sounding board when you’re struggling with choosing a path, giving you a way to work through challenges with greater ease.
4. They Understand Their Motivations
Managers aren’t in leadership roles purely for glory. Instead, they typically have other extrinsic and intrinsic motivations that influence their approaches and impact how they view success. Knowing what lies beneath is vital, as it shines a light on the “why” behind everything they do.
By learning your motivations, you gain powerful insights into the driving forces behind your decisions and actions. Along with helping you understand why a course may seem right, it also lets you know why you’re potentially inclined to use an approach that isn’t ideal. As a result, you can make sure that the options you pursue are chosen for the right reasons, making you a more decisive leader.
Overall, great managers typically have everything above in common, guiding their teams more effectively and making wiser decisions. If you’d like to learn more about what it takes to excel in management, the team at The Advance Group wants to hear from you. Contact us today.