How to Manage Staff

Picture the scene. You are doing a really great job. Lots of people are singing your praises. A job at the next level comes up and you get appointed.

Now you have a small team of staff to manage. You might have done a few courses and maybe even read some books but you are still apprehensive.

Many people move into managing from a professional background and do a fantastic job. Some do an okay job and some struggle.

I wish I could say to you that there is some magic formula which If you follow will result in you doing fantastically.

Personally I don’t believe such a formula exists. At the same time I believe there are some things you can do to stack the odds in your favour.managerial-skills-for-professionals

Focus on managing

Managing is about planning, organising, problem solving, decision making, making best use of resources and achieving results through others among other things.

Sometimes it easy to think you can fill your schedule to the max and somehow miraculously find time for managing.

It really does not work like that. You have to change your focus so that managing staff is an integral part of your job.

Be interested in people

It is interesting how some managers’ approach people differently based on their seniority or influence. A good manager takes a genuine interest in people and helping them to achieve what they want in their careers.

Set clear expectations

It never ceases to amaze me how poor many managers are at setting clear expectations in terms of what is to be delivered, behaviours and ways of working.

If people lack clarity they will spend more time and energy guessing what is expected.

Create a positive environment

People will look to you as their manager. In fact some say that the relationship with their line manager is a big factor in determining whether people stay in a job or move on.

Try to create an environment where there is a balance between hard work and fun.

Create incentives

This is really important if you have staff who are doing a lot of repetitive work. Sometimes creating a simple bonus scheme for achieving certain targets can create step change in performance.

Treat people well

Few if anyone turns up with the intention of doing a bad job. We all have off days but try to have a continual focus on treating people well.

Be honest

There will be a few instances where for commercial reasons you cannot communicate everything. At the same time when you are in a position to communicate, staff will appreciate a degree of honesty.

Don’t promise something you can’t deliver

This merely results in a loss of trust. Making promises about things that you can’t guarantee that you can deliver is never a good strategy.

Be professional

No matter how tough it gets, how challenging it is, always be professional in the way that you deal with staff.

This is vital to retaining the respect of others.

Duncan Brodie helps accountants and professionals to become great managers and achieve career success. Learn more here.

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 8,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

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