Effective Ways To Manage Your Workplace Team

June 6, 2018 9:44 pm

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It sometimes sucks to be at the top. Being a manager isn’t easy, especially when you have to manage a range of people, with varying job roles and personalities. Not only do you have to stay on top of what they are doing, but you also need to manage your own responsibilities. It’s tough, but if you don’t manage them successfully, your business will suffer. We aren’t saying your staff will become like headless chickens, running around with no clear goals or any idea of what to do, but your workplace may come close to that analogy if you don’t steer a steady ship.

In this article, we will give you a few tips to help you in your management role. You should also continue your learning elsewhere, such as designated leadership courses to improve your managerial skills. It’s a difficult job being at the top, but your employees expect a lot from you. Mismanage them, and you will face problems in your business. Improve your skills, however, and you will see better results from the people you work with.

  • Streamline work processes. You have a lot to do in the day, so you need to streamline your regular tasks. Thankfully, there are apps and software tools that can help you do just that. Sling is a powerful team communication tool, which can also offer you scheduling templates to aid you in calculating work hours for your team. Asana is a great mobile app for promoting teamwork. Freshbooks is an accounting tool that can help you manage staff wages. There are too many apps and tools to mention, but a quick Google search will offer you a range of options to help you streamline some of your management tasks.
  • Remember communication is key. There are many facets to communication that we could mention, but a lot of it is common sense. If you don’t spend time communicating with your employees, they won’t be able to manage their workloads effectively. So, keep everybody in the loop about what needs to be done, offer your staff feedback on work completed and be open to listening to any concerns your team has. You won’t get very far if your managerial style is more akin to a wallflower, so be accessible to your team, talking and listening to them to keep them on task and on your side.

 

  • Give your team a purpose. To improve staff morale and productivity, they need to have a purpose in what they are doing. You may be the boss, but they won’t take too kindly if there is no clear endgame in sight. Why do they do what they do? How does their workload fit in with the overall vision of the company? Let them know, set purposeful goals with your team, and communicate your vision so they can ride along with you.

 

  • Build positive relationships. If you have a small team, there should be no problem in developing good relationships. Knowing their name is a start, as is having some insight into their lives on a personal level. Knowing that you are taking an interest in their lives will boost morale, letting them know you see them as a human being and not a mindless work drone. Being the manager of a larger team is a little more difficult, but you should still find ways to build a rapport with the people who work for you.
  • Be human. Okay, so you have made it to the higher echelons of management, but that doesn’t mean you are superhuman. You will make life very difficult for yourself if you try and come across as infallible, and your team will see right through you. If you make a mistake, own up to it, as this will breed the same behaviour within your team. By lightening up a little, your staff will breathe a sigh of relief that you aren’t always there to criticise and command their every move. Show your human side, and you will be respected rather than feared.
  • Delegate to the right people. You have a team of people with skills and talents, and to be effective, they need to be in the roles that suit them. It’s the whole square peg in a round hole deal when you go against this, trying to give your team members jobs that are inappropriate to them. Therefore, get to know your team. Find out what skills they have. When you know what they can do well, you will know who to delegate certain responsibilities to. Your team will be more productive as a result.
  • Assert your authority. Ultimately, you are in charge. While you do need to allow room for feedback and staff participation, you still need to make the tough calls. If you’re indecisive, you are going to cause anxiety within your team. They won’t be able to respect you, and will be uncertain of where they stand. By being assertive, even if they don’t always agree with your decisions, they will start to respect you more (unless you make blunderous decisions). By asserting your authority, your team are less likely to step out of line, especially those amongst your staff who are prone to laziness and poor work ethics.
  • Deal with conflict. Following on from the above, you do need to step in when conflict rises. Ignore it, and your team and business will suffer as a result. You may need to deal with workplace bullying, sexual harassment cases, harmful office gossip, or on a work level, arguments about where to steer a project. Conflict isn’t always a bad thing, especially when it leads to healthy discussions, but when issues become personal between staff members, a negative atmosphere will preside over the work environment.

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  • Be a good role model. Your team are looking to you to steer them in the right direction, so be that person who is inspirational and diligent at work. If you want your team to be professional, you need to carry on that same behaviour in what you do. If you show other people respect, your team should follow that through in their work relationships. If you want your team to respect you, respect them in turn. So, be that good role model, and enjoy the benefits to your business as your fine example passes down to those who work around you.
  • Don’t overwork your team. As we said earlier, your team are not work drones. They are human beings, with capabilities that need to be stretched, but not overbearingly so. If you give your team too much work to do, or impose strict deadlines on them, you will see a rise in sick days when they become stressed and anxious about returning to the workplace. Don’t let them burn out. Delegate accordingly, timetable their day with reasonable goals, and outsource tasks occasionally to lessen the workload your team has to deal with.
  • Reward your team. When managers think of rewarding their team, they often shudder. Why? Because the issue of money comes into play. However, there are low-cost ways to reward your team, without the need to dish out cash bonuses or give out expensive items as a thank you for their hard work. A simple thank you is often enough, as is the occasional note of praise. You might also let them finish work early when projects have achieved completion, or have a (cheap) office trophy that gets passed around to the highest-performing members of staff. Your team needs to be rewarded occasionally to know they are being appreciated, so engender this culture of praise in the workplace.
  • Develop your team. For your sake, and for the sake of the people working for you, find ways to develop them. This can include training and workshops to improve their skill levels. It can also include 1:1 coaching to help them develop personal and professional traits. By developing your team, you will better equip them for the tasks they have to do each day, and you will also improve their morale. Despite the cost of training and education, your business will actually profit due to the improved productivity of a better-equipped team.
  • Respect your team. We have already alluded to some elements of respect already in this article, but it deserves special mention here too. If your team feel disrespected, they won’t perform well for you. Respect comes in all shapes and sizes. This includes trust, not micromanaging your team because you don’t trust their talents and instincts. Respect includes an element of care, looking after your employees’ needs, rather than using them as mere work fodder. Respect also includes giving them recognition where it’s due, and not taking credit to push yourself forwards. You want to be respected as a manager, so do your team the courtesy by following the same work ethic.

If you are in a managerial position, some of what we mentioned may be second-nature to you. On the other hand, if there any weakness in your approach, use our advice to better your management style and improve the goings-on within your team. Your business will see greater success if you do.

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