Outside of job uncertainties that are induced by the coronavirus pandemic, people typically do not throw in the towel on good jobs. Sometimes, employee unhappiness or disengagement can be caused by difficult co-workers or bosses.
The question is, what should you, as a HR professional, look for when hiring managers for your teams.
Good managers are leaders of their teams, leveraging their experience and thought leadership to help set goals and their relevant strategies for teams to achieve. They are the ones that ensure that information from the top is understood and passed down to the individual employees efficiently, providing effective communication across the organisation.
Good managers are motivators, connectors of employees that help them to achieve their business and work goals. This translates to tangible benefits for the organisation, the employees and the managers themselves.
At the organisational level, good managers are crucial in ensuring efficiency and reducing the turnaround time for work processes. They will be able to reduce business cost by increasing productivity and decreasing redundancies.
Employees will benefit from good managers, reporting higher work satisfaction when working in a healthy work environment. They will also grow professionally, which helps them with their next career advancement. This also has the effect of reducing employee attrition.
Qualities of good managers and why you should develop them:
According to Google’s Oxygen project, Google analysed the traits of good managers using a double-blind, likert scale survey on managers’ ratings. Their research showed that there were common traits that employees looked for in managers.
This article summarises them into 4 traits, with the scope of effect moving from broad, business strategy related traits to traits focused more on individual employees.
1. They provide clear strategy and communication
The best managers are those that know what they are doing. This might seem like a given, but managers are the bridge between decision makers and on-the-ground workers. They are supposed to process and understand the end state of the business service and rally their team to achieve it. This requires them to be cogent with regards to work performance, easily segregating tasks into their relative importance and urgency.
Once the manager has the strategy down, the next step is for them to convince the team of its value. There is no one size fits all solution here. Good managers are managers that are able to motivate their teams based on the team dynamics and preferences. They must be able to communicate their strategies vividly to their teams while simultaneously staying away from any conflicting instructions and easing any clarifications from the team
2. They foster a positive work environment
A good team is an inclusive team. To promote effective communication and therefore teamwork, there should be no tension between team members. A good manager should manage disagreements in opinion between team members. They should be able to cultivate a safe and comfortable working environment for the team, assuring them that their concerns are being taken care of.
Managers are often seen as the living embodiment of a company’s “red tape”. However, this should not be the case. The core focus of managers should be promoting efficiency and effectiveness of their teams and not construct barriers that impede processes. Middle managers especially are in the unique position of understanding the intent of company policy while also experiencing the implications of such policies. This allows them the opportunity to provide valuable feedback on how to create healthy work policies that do not adversely impact employees.
3. They lead the team without micromanaging
A good manager will also be able to empower their team with their skillset. Often, managers are employees that rose through the ranks by performing better than their peers. They are likely to have a strong grasp of the technical fundamentals that their teams might be lacking in. If they transferred from another team or company, they may also bring cross-domain knowledge that could greatly benefit their team’s work experience.
Nobody enjoys a micromanager. The best managers lead, bearing the majority of risks and responsibilities the work entails. They are leaders that motivate their teams, not sit back and only hand out instructions for their team to complete. Managers should be on the ground with the team, a part of the work process just like any of their team members.
4. They have a nurturing spirit
With the shift towards work-life integration, many millennials no longer view work as simply providing value for your employer. There has been a greater emphasis on personal and professional development at work, with employees looking for companies that can bring them to the next level.
It is not a surprise that employees enjoy working with managers that are good coaches. Due to their role in work supervision, managers are well equipped to provide guidance and nurture their teams. Utilising their past experiences, they may very well provide detailed feedback on an employee’s work performance as well as how they could improve.
The future of good managers
Keeping in mind of the positive outcomes good managers bring, HR professionals should look closely at how they are assessing their managerial hires for targeted qualities.
And should you require assistance with finding great managers for your team, our recruitment and search specialists at BGC Group are able to offer you targeted talent search solutions for managerial level positions based on your company’s needs.
For more information on how we can kick-start the headhunting project, feel free to reach out to us!