By David Cox | February 4, 2020
The criteria for advancement to management is expanding.
Management leadership skills are gaining more attention among organizational leaders. These business owners and executives are moving beyond the traditional standards for promotion to management roles. Today, they're looking for potentially significant leaders. Obviously, technical skills, past employee performance, and tenure are still crucial factors in choosing the best candidates. However, they’re no longer sufficient for determining advancement to management-leadership roles.
Successful organizations are beginning to assess whether or not candidates can effectively lead a team before advancing them to a management role. In other words, advancement to management will be based, at least in part, on leadership assessment, rather than an assumption of capability.
As such, what do you, as an aspiring or current manager, need to learn that will better enable you to manage a team and distinguish yourself as an effective leader?
Management leadership skills: What skills do prospective and current managers need to develop?
Here are nine skills that will help you manage more effectively, reinforce your leadership, and drive better results.
Leading with integrity instills trust in others. Managers who demonstrate integrity are effective and lead by example. Certainly, technical proficiency, past performance, and adequate tenure will never make up for lacking integrity. Good leaders not only do the right thing; they are truthful and reliable. Moreover, they maintain a reputation for transparency in actions and decision-making.
2. Team building
Managers must select the best people for each job regardless of gender, ethnicity, or other factors. A good leader can develop an inclusive workforce. Obviously, they shouldn’t let their personal feelings negatively impact their willingness to hire the best people to get the job done.
3. Positive attitude
If managers don't respect the company and its leaders, why should their employees? Managers need a positive attitude to be champions of the organization. They need to support the direction of the organization. Likewise, they need to promote that direction to their employees enthusiastically. Doing so is particularly important when an organization is transitioning or working through change.
Managers must be able to communicate their goals and expectations effectively to get the most out of their teams. Subsequently, a good manager makes sure everyone understands their role and the expectations for that role. Clear goals and expectations keep employees engaged while working towards something bigger than themselves.
Listening is essential to effective communication. Managers need to genuinely listen to their employees and not just hear what they want to hear. Furthermore, listening is key to building solid relationships with employees because it lets them know that you value them. When employees feel valued, they are encouraged to participate and contribute.
No two people are the same. Everyone’s style of working is somewhat different. As such, flexibility is an essential skill for managers to be able to adapt their management style to the diversity of their team members. Undoubtedly, flexibility is the future of the workplace. Moreover, managers need to be able to oversee employees beyond the physical workplace as more choose to work remotely.
Delegating work-related tasks to the right employee is an essential skill for today’s managers. The broader the manager’s responsibilities, the higher the risk of failure, unless they delegate to their team members effectively. So, managers must appropriately select the best person for the job from their team. Then, trust the person they choose to get it done.
Obviously, problems will arise in every business or organization. Good managers understand they will be judged by how they solve those problems. Subsequently, managers need to be prepared to make tough decisionsquickly.
It's essential that once leadership makes these decisions, they are implemented to achieve the desired results. Consequently, if the decision doesn't yield the desired results, leaders must be willing to act quickly and change course.
Basically, leadership is a series of decisions; if you make a bad decision, respond with a better one.
Today's organizations need to share information across all departments and levels. Often, a lack of collaboration leads to power struggles, disruption among team members, and lowered productivity. Managers must be able to promote the sharing of information. Specifically, they can do this by setting shared goals and incentivizing a collaborative work environment. Doing so will serve to unify the team members with a sense of common purpose.
Management leadership skills create an "X-factor."
Smart companies looking to develop a more sustainable future will include management leadership skills in their training programs. Doing so will give them a stronger pool of candidates to promote from within the organization. However, if you’re looking to distinguish yourself through managerial leadership right now, don’t wait for your employer to offer such training.
Therefore, applying managerial leadership skills to your management responsibilities will help you create an "X factor" that will distinguish you from other managers. It's a factor of credibility necessary to lead your team in accomplishing its goals and making continuous improvement.