If team members were asked to confidentially evaluate their managers then rarely would the feedback be all positive but possibly more along the lines of “motivates by threatening punitive action” or “hears what they want to hear but not what I say”. In Dubai, a recognised problem is that many managers tend to do very little ‘managing’ and provide minimal direction or support for staff. They are not able to inspire better performance but do demand it. Managing is not an easy job but giving up and taking the hardened attitude of “my way or the highway” will not ultimately create a sustainable, creative, effective, cohesive and empowered team.
As a manager you cannot rely solely on your technical skills to lead a team you also need to have good management and interpersonal communication skills. It is crucial that your team develop trust and confidence in you and you will need to invest in and update your own skill set/ expertise on a continual basis. It is as much a developmental journey for you as it for each team member you are responsible for. A high performing team will be one in which the members are ultimately self managing, where ideas are freely exchanged, leadership roles shift and peer coaching is present. In order to improve your management style you may need to work on the following areas:-
- Effective delegation.
- Communicating the companies’ guidelines and vision. Do staff know what the big picture is?
- Clear communication of goals and possible strategies to achieve them.
- Listening to feedback.
- Analysing facts not opinion, the “what” not the “who”.
- Managing meetings effectively.
- Encouraging and coaching team members towards achieving their goals based on what they are doing right not through criticism of what they are doing wrong.
- Developing the skills set of team members and setting aside enough time to do this.
- Positively rewarding and modeling best practices.
- Encouraging others to share their ideas in a non threatening way.
- Motivating members to excel improve their work quality and accept responsibility.
- Evaluating the development of yourself and team members in a positive way. Your performance management should not be superficial, restricted to generic performance appraisals .It should ideally arise from a genuine realisation of the achievements, talents, skill gaps and career aspirations of staff which have been gleaned from regular coaching and one on one discussion.
- Cultural Intelligence.
Of course none of this comes easily; it will take time from your already busy schedule, training, practice and determination to reinforce these management behaviours but when the effective team you are working towards emerges their performance and job satisfaction will validate your management model.