How to be a Great Manager

By Pavan Kumar
How to be a great manager

So how can you be a “great manager”? The things that had sown previously have brought you the harvest today. So if you want something different, you have to sow something different today to harvest that tomorrow. There’s no other way to get there.

Same Actions deliver Same results

Like  Marcus Buckingham puts it in Harvard Business Review that “there is one quality that sets truly great managers apart from the rest: They discover what is unique about each person and then capitalize on it. Average managers play checkers, while great managers play chess. ” In chess, each type of piece moves differently, and to win you need to know how to move them together. Similarly, great managers know and value the unique abilities and even the eccentricities of their employees, and they learn how best to integrate them into a coordinated plan of attack.

So what should you know about your team members?

What motivates your team members?

People are generally motivated by something from within (a desire to achieve), something outside (like recognition, money, or a promotion), the greater good for a team, company, Country, or some combination of these 3 things. Once you identify what motivates each of your team members, come up with a clear set of goals on what is required from them, and explain how achieving those goals will help them achieve their personal goals. Try a formal performance management software system and ensure you set correct KPIs such that employees can check how are they performing and identify areas of improvement. Always remember that “what gets measured, gets done.”

In the past life, when we consistency not able to achieve 99% on-time delivery(OTD), we worked with the team to come up with new KPI’s, showed them how to calculate it and display it on their dashboard and then HR to split up compensation into Fixed pay + Variable Pay and Variable pay was directly proportional to KPI’s and explained to team members

95% of OTD KPI = 20 % of bonus pay,

96% of OTD KPI = 40 % of bonus pay,

97% of OTD KPI = 60 % of bonus pay,

98% of OTD KPI = 80 % of bonus pay,

99% of OTD KPI = 90 % of bonus pay,

100% of OTD KPI = 100 % of bonus pay

In less than 3 months we were at 99% OTD and when members were not able to achieve it, they always had a solution on how to make it 100%.

The second you should know about your team members is their strength


It is critically important for you to know your team member’s strengths and how they fit into the big picture. You can learn about their employees based on the information they share in their profiles, and make decisions accordingly. For example, if a member of your team expresses a strong interest in astronomy fashion on LinkedIn, then he might be a better fit to assign to a prospective client like SpaceX than on Gucci.

If someone on your team is known to be well organized, they may be the right fit for organizing on all the team documents, while those who are detailed oriented are naturally good at QA, for Project Coordination and the one who gets along with all may also be a natural diplomat.

Additionally, seek out some honest feedback from your team in how their teammates are doing. You could ask about the areas of motivation, organization, communication, and training.

Additional skills that you will need to practice in your daily situation daily tasks as a manager are:

Patience: No matter how good your plan is there will be something different that comes your way and you will need patience capacity to accept or tolerate delays, problems without becoming annoyed or anxious. Take time to choose your response to a given event, rather than getting swayed by the moment. If you are corned into a situation, where you have to say something use the phrase, “I need to think about this before I can respond”.

Thoughtfulness: Thoughtfulness is about more than being nice, it implies consideration. Asking a few questions is all it takes to uncover useful information and enrich the relationship.

Utilize a Human Resource Management System (HRMS) to keep track of your communications with employees but, If someone says they’re struggling with something, don’t just express concern: Make an honest attempt to help them and check back later to see how they’re doing.

Fairness: One of the most difficult tasks in your managerial role will be to strive for fairness. One easy way to navigate it is by asking yourself

” Was your decision-making process fair for everyone involved? ” for you all your managerial decisions. You can be sure that your team will be discussing your decisions and the member that is disadvantaged is likely going to perceive your decision as unfair.

You may identify outstanding employees who are capable of taking on more responsibilities but have not yet paid their dues. Promoting such employees may not be fair, but it could be the right thing to do.

No matter how you choose to implement it but to be a great manager, you have to turn your focus away from yourself and be able to empathize with the people who work for you.

Srini, specializes in implementing Global Sales and Marketing operations Global CRM optimization, Lead-to-Opportunity velocity, Configure-Price-Quote effectiveness, and forecasting integrity.

A version of this article appears in  and written by Srini Sharma

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