Written by Anna Bernstein on 17 Mar 2014
As a manager, leader or head of a company it is essential that you possess strong People Management Skills. Your ability to manage the people within your company has a direct and profound effect upon work environment, productivity and performance. Only recently have businesses start to switch on to the fact that good people management skills, those that understand psychology and behaviour, are proven to lead to improved performance and overall business success. This post will look at 5 people management skills, and how adopting them will help you improve your companies work environment, productivity and performance.
On a day-to-day basis you will interact with a wide range of people both within and from outside your company. A strong leader builds solid relationships with everyone. This does not mean becoming everyone’s best friend David Brent style. It’s about building relationships based on respect.
For example; stopping to talk to your receptionist and showing interest in what they do, their opinions and concerns will only take five minutes. However, that five minute conversation will show value, which will encourage, support and boost morale. This in turn will affect their productivity and performance, which will increase their respect and belief in you as a leader. But it goes further than that! A receptionist is the first point of contact within a company. So through that simple five minute conversation you have not only improved the morale and performance of one person, but the morale and performance of all those that follow.
Now imagine the positive affect this would have if you applied it to everyone you came into contact with on a daily basis?
Top Tip: Remember a strong manager or leader builds relationships through respect and trust, not by being everyone’s best friend. Be confident, strong and professional, whilst remaining transparent, approachable and encouraging.
Your ability to listen and communicate is vital to your success as a manger or leader. By this we don’t just mean your ability to listen and speak on a one-to-one basis, but also your ability to capture people’s minds in order to present your ideas, values and visions as well as your ability to listen and soak up the ideas, values and visions of others; that is true communication.
Whether you are speaking with one person, or presenting to a whole audience of people, strong communicative skills are a must. Strong communicative skills boil down to an understanding of who you are communicating with. Armed with this information you can adapt and adjust how you approach conversations and presentations to your advantage.
Top Tip: Check out the i get you Pro business tool, designed to provide you with personality and behavioural insights that will help you approach communication and negotiation situations.
As you build and strengthen relationships throughout your company you should begin to identify the individual talents, abilities and strengths of your employees. Knowing this will help you develop your team so that everyone is positioned within a role that they can succeed and excel within. Take time to communicate with each employee individually, quite often employees will be forthcoming about what they see as their strengths and where they aim to be; they may also spark ideas to strengthen your team and its performance as a whole.
Encourage your team through promotions, incentives and recognition. These activities not only boost morale but give employees goals to work towards.
Support your team. Sometimes low morale and performance can be due to a lack of support and training. Ensure that your whole team are up to pace with regular training sessions and training days.
Remember, much like in football, you are the manager and your employees are your team; it’s up to you to ensure that you develop your team for success.
Top Tip: By simply introducing a “Team Member of the Month” incentive, many companies have reported an increase in productivity and performance amongst its employees.
If you have been following our previous three essential people management skills, then you should be well on your way to developing some strong and trusting relationships. Being transparent is another key skill that will ensure you keep them!
Hiding things from your employees is a recipe for disaster. Remember that you have spent time building relationships with these people, relationships based on respect. As part of that mutual respect you owe it to them to keep them in the loop.
By remaining transparent, honest and levelling with your employees you will further develop their respect and loyalty. They will celebrate with you when business is booming and support you through the bad.
Top Tip: A monthly newsletter is a great way for your company and yourself to remain transparent, keep employees informed of any company news, changes, progression or problems.
This can often be a tough one, but in our opinion is the sign of truly exceptional people management. As the manager, leader or head of your company, all responsibility should end with you. You are accountable for the performance of your employees.
By following the tips and advice given above you should now have an idea as to how you can use these people management skills to strengthen and improve your team, and their performance. You should be confidently in charge and prepared to lead them to success.
However on the road to success there will be bumps, what’s important is that when they occur you are ready to take responsibility.
Top Tip: Remember failure is not a weakness; it’s an opportunity to learn, strengthen and improve. Take responsibility for your team and they will further respect you for it.