The following is Leadership Series Volume II guest blog from Jim Simpson of J Simpson & Associates
Effective management is essential to create a successful company. It is responsible for the Day-to-day operations which create a smooth flow of activity. Today’s tough economic environment rewards efficient, effective operations. Tight margins require even tighter expense controls. An effective manager understands this and reacts accordingly. Getting the very best performance out of each team member is one of the requirements of today’s manager. Continuous improvement is essential.
Improvement comes from having a clear picture of what is expected. A written job description which really explains the requirements of the job is essential. There should also be written processes breaking down the required activities of the job. The processes help in training and help isolate problems to assist is their correction. Once a team member understands completely what needs to be done, the next question is “can you do it”? If not, training should be provided. Once the employee knows exactly what the job requires and is sure he can do it, the good manager gets out of his way and let’s him do it. Micro-management is not an effective management style.
Feedback is the biggest motivator of people. Hopefully the feedback can be positive but even negative feedback is better than none at all. Many companies get hung up on quarterly or annual employee evaluations and when conducted properly they can be of value. The problem is that most people, the managers included, hate them! Seldom are we trained in how to conduct them effectively. A good evaluation points out the negative and positive aspects of the employee’s performance and the parties agree on a plan to improve performance where needed. Discussions of pay or pay increases should not be a part of this process.
“Day-to-day” management is very effective. Spend time with your direct reports each day. Get to know them and how they feel about you, their job and the company. Solve problems with them while the issues are small and you will seldom have big problems to address. This technique also builds trust which we will discuss in our next visit.
Jim Simpson, president of J SIMPSON AND ASSOCIATES, LLC in Shelby Township, MI, specializes in Executive Coaching and Leadership Team Development. Jim has worked with the Management Team at Evans Distribution Systems since August of 2010. Find out more at jsimpsonandassociates.com