Managers matter. Period. End of statement.
Managers are responsible for a range of specified and implied tasks that are critical to the success of an organization. These tasks include translating strategic initiatives, facilitating communication and collaboration, prioritizing projects, delegating tasks to the appropriate team members, and supporting career development. This sounds like a lot… because it is.
Don’t believe managers are important?
One of the largest and most recognizable companies in the world made the decision that managers were not necessary to the business process.
In 2002, Google decided to remove managers from the company. The completely flat organizational experiment lasted a few months and failed in spectacular fashion. The founders of Google quickly realized that managers are important to the overall success of an organization.
In this experiment, employees were left without direction on initiatives and the company struggled to work through standard business operations. In addition, employees would go to the co-founders with interpersonal gripes, expense report questions, and everything else that shouldn’t rise to the executive level. It is unfeasible to believe that executive leaders can provide guidance on every decision made throughout an organization – their primary job is to position the company for future success, not manage day-to-day operations. These executive leaders need managers to be accountable for the company’s successes and failures.
Need more proof?
- Quality managers and team leaders are the single biggest factor in an organization’s long-term success
- 70% of a team’s engagement is influenced by managers
Surveys across the US show that almost six in ten employees say that managers in their workplace can benefit from training on how to better accomplish their people management responsibilities. Furthermore, only 21% of employees strongly agree that their performance is managed in a way that motivates them to do exceptional work. The role of a manager, specifically people management, is quickly transitioning from a boss mentality to a coach mentality.
This transition is a hard pill to swallow because being a boss is easy, but being a coach is hard. Fortunately, people management, like leadership, is a skill that can be learned and honed over time. With a mixture experience, excellent mentorship, and coaching every manager with direct and indirect reports can be put in a position to excel.
What are your thoughts?
What experiences have your learned as a manager the hard way?
What tacit knowledge can you share?
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