Thursday March 29th, 2018
As a manager, you are the driving force behind your team’s success or failure. You have the opportunity to empower, motivate and support your employees in ways that can help them achieve greatness, which in turn contributes to the company’s overall success. So, how do you know if you’re making the most of that opportunity and really contributing to a positive company culture, as opposed to frustrating your team and dragging down morale?
The success of your role as a manager isn’t just about the production metrics. While it is important to measure performance and track successes and failures to build a more stable company, it isn’t the only thing you should be measuring as a manager. Your job and the success of failure of your tactics largely relate to how your employees feel about their place within the company. Are they valued? Are they adequately compensated? Are they challenged? Are they supported?
So, in order to get an accurate and full picture of your effectiveness as a manager, it’s important to ask the right questions – and to understand why you’re asking them.
Yes, we know we just told you to ask more questions to measure your effectiveness, but it is possible to be too focused on metrics. This question is important because, if you’re hyper-focused on measuring every tiny detail of your employees’ workflow, it’s highly likely that you’re doing more to frustrate them than motivate them.
Great management requires balance. Yes, you should measure your employees’ performance, but if you are too focused on the numbers, and not focused on the people you are supposed to support, you will create an atmosphere of judgement and stress, as opposed to one that cultivates ingenuity. Evaluate your team’s productivity, but not to the point that it hinders their progress.
When measuring your team’s progress, it’s important to ensure that there are actionable steps to take towards progress based on the results. Metrics mean nothing if you don’t know what to do with the information once you get it. And sharing evaluation results with your employees without helping them take the steps to improve is a waste of both your time and theirs.
Before you begin an evaluation process with your team, make sure you have a clear understanding of how you plan to help the team move forward and what goals you’d like them to achieve. After your evaluations are complete, look for opportunities to make improvements and present those opportunities to your employees with their results. Including them in the conversation of how to move forward will go a long way make your employees feel valued and will motivate them to be agents of positive change for the company.
Communication is the foundation of any successful team and great managers know how to generate important discussions with their teams. As a manager your job isn’t simply to oversee your employees and pass down judgement on their performance when you see fit. Your job is to include them in the process and allow them opportunities to thrive.
Many managers evaluate their employees annually, but then never talk about it again until it’s time for the next evaluation. You don’t necessarily need to evaluate your team more often, but you should absolutely keep the conversation going if you want to make the most of those metrics. Talk about the results with your team; give them the chance to share their thoughts about what’s working and what’s not. Continue that conversation throughout the year, checking back in to ensure that everyone is still working towards the same goals. Make your employees a part of the discussion, and they are sure to feel more motivated to contribute to the success of the company.
Understanding how your employees feel about their position in the company will give you so much insight into your role as their manager. Take the time to communicate the reasons behind your metrics, while also providing them with actionable steps to success and you are sure to find yourself the leader of a highly motivated and productive team of super stars.