As a business grows, the number of employees often grows with it, and that quite often means that, suddenly, a member of the team will have people that report to them but has never managed people before. That’s how it should be, that is an aspect of business growth. Sadly, we often witness some new managers that are given very little guidance on how to manage people, let alone how to get the best performance out of them.
A Management Qualification or short course isn’t financially (or time commitment) viable in most cases, so what do you do? Just let them get on with it – hope that they had good managers in the past to reflect on and that they will be a natural, or maybe just trial and error.
Those things aren’t bad ideas (and you shouldn’t make someone a manager of people if you really think that they will be rubbish at it). But, to help them on their way, here are some tips that you can share with your new managers to get them started on their journey of engaging people to get results:
- Know what the company vision is and believe in it
If you are committed to achieving the business goals, you can share them and lead your employees towards something that is more than just day to day. Employees need to know how their job helps to fit in with the business performance.
- Be familiar with your company’s people procedures
If you have good policies and procedures in place and you follow them, it helps your employees to know that you will treat them fairly and consistently.
- Be fair and consistent
Whilst people are different, and not every case is the same, it is important to not be seen to have favourites and that you are treating people fairly and consistently. Employees like to know where they stand.
- Understand what makes your employees tick
Not everyone wants the same things from work, but most people want interesting work, opportunities for development, a decent work-life balance, performance feedback, a chance to get involved and a team working environment. Those things, supported by a good line manager, can make someone go the extra mile.
- Support and champion your people
You are the person that can recognise potential, that can motivate, and that can make a difference to how someone feels about their workplace. Supporting (not counselling) can help your employee be more committed to the business.
- Give praise when it is due
It is amazing how far a ‘thank you’, or ‘well done’ goes. Don’t forget to praise work that is good. Recognition of good work can motivate as well as money can for some people.
- Make time to deal with people issues
Managing people takes up time. Discussions about performance, agreeing priorities and goals and communicating and sharing information is important. Put time in your diary for a two-way discussion on a regular basis and ensure you do the big things like performance appraisal properly.
- Keep your promises
Although this should be given, ensure that you do not commit to something you cannot deliver. Keeping promises makes you trustworthy, and that is worth a lot! If you can’t deliver on something you said you would do, let your employee know as soon as possible why and what can be done about it if possible.
- Tackle poor performance swiftly
Putting up with problems is not good for anyone. If there is an issue with an employee’s performance it needs to be dealt swiftly, either with a quiet word or the company’s disciplinary procedure. But, be prepared to listen to any mitigating circumstances that your employee may have.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help
There will be times when you need help to tackle a people problem, don’t be afraid to ask, and don’t be afraid to tell your employee that you have some research to do.
If you are not sure on where to get started with your people issues, at The Organised Business, we can provide you with an HR review to identify the gaps and create an action plan on what you need to do to get the best out of your people. We can also help you to create a vision for your business. Please contact us here if you would like more support from The Organised Business.