Being an effective manager can be quite a minefield, but doesn’t have to be terribly tricky, if you throw yourself into it, and follow some simple tips.

7 Tips To Be An Effective Manager

  • Be Genuine – If you’re fake, everyone is going to know it. You have to be genuine, and be yourself at a fundamental level.  Represent yourself as you are, but that doesn’t mean you have to volunteer too much info, just that what you volunteer is entirely your own.
  • Be Truthful – If someone asks you a question that you can’t answer- just tell them that you can’t answer.  I’m not saying be hurtful or brutal, but that doesn’t mean that what comes from your mouth has to be anything less than the absolute truth.  If you can’t change something, admit it.  If you’re not in control of a situation, acknowledge that as well.
  • Take the time to get to know your employees – which means, knowing what their background is, and where they want to go.  Get to know their spouses’ names, as well as their children’s names, ages, and hobbies.  Most people will simply volunteer the info, if you listen.  Then make a point of asking how things are going.
  • Understand your employees motivation – Not everyone is motivated by the same things.  Some people want money, others title, public recognition, flexibility or a host of other things.  It is impossible to use the correct carrot if you have no clue what it is.
  • Praise people early and often.  I can’t say this enough.  Praise, and thanks go a long way.  Make sure that you are using these in about a 10:1 proportion with any negative or corrective actions.
  • Do as you say – If you can’t walk the walk, then your employees won’t either.  Show up to work on time, and be fully present and engaged.  Otherwise, you’re giving them permission to do the same.  While I was working on my MBA, that meant that I never, ever, not once worked on school work at work, especially since I had 10 interns at the time.
  • Don’t play favorites- Which can be really hard.  Especially when you have someone who is a problem child reporting to you.  I make a point of still spending time with those prodigal children, so they know I’m watching, observing, and coaching them along.  People notice when you play favorites, and it doesn’t go over well. It breeds jealousy, and can be hurtful.  At home, I refuse to tell my children whether I have a favorite child.  Or I tell them that my favorite is the cat.  The same applies at work, managing people.


Oh- and one last tip- not so effective leadershipBe Self Aware.    If you don’t know how you’re doing, solicit feedback from your employees, and take corrective action if needed.  It never hurts to do a 360, and see how things are going, and if they can be done better.

Being an effective manager isn’t magical, and it doesn’t happen by accident.  Rather, it takes a lot of hard work, and diligence.  Just like leadership, management is a skill that is learned, and is not necessarily innate.

What are your tips for being an effective manager?