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Team Management Skills: The Core Skills Needed to Manage Your Team

Communicating With Your Team

Meetings of all kinds, and regular ones in particular, are notorious for wasting people's time, so it's well worth mastering the skill of running effective meetings.

Being in charge, it’s easy to assume you know what others are saying, or that listening isn’t important and that your solutions are better. But learning active listening is key as it allows early detection problems, avoids costly misunderstandings, and builds trust within their teams. 

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

Team Management Skills: The Core Skills Needed to Manage Your Team

Team Management Skills: The Core Skills Needed to Manage Your Team

https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMM_92.htm

mindtools.com

8

Key Ideas

The Difference Between Managers And Leaders

Leadership involves creating a compelling vision of the future, communicating that vision, and helping people understand and commit to it.

Managers, on the other hand, are responsible for ensuring that the vision is implemented efficiently and successfully.

The Importance Of Delegation

There's only so much that you can achieve working on your own, that's why it's important to delegate effectively. To successfully delegate:

  • Explain what your team's role and goals are. Or even formalize it in a team charter, which can also be useful for keeping the team on track.
  • Think about the skills, experience and competencies within your team, and start matching people to tasks. 

Motivating Your Team

Whatever approach you prefer to adopt, you also need to bear in mind that different people have different needs when it comes to motivation. 

One size does not fit all. Some individuals are highly self-motivated, while others will under-perform without managerial input, and you need to be able to handle both. 

Developing Your Team

Teams are made up of individuals who have different outlooks and abilities, and are at different stages of their careers. Some may be challenged by the tasks you assign and need help while others may be unchallenged, and may be looking for opportunities to stretch their skills.

It's your responsibility to develop all of your people and doing so makes you a manager people aspire to work for. The most effective way of developing your people is to ensure that you give regular feedback to members of your team.

Communicating With Your Team

Meetings of all kinds, and regular ones in particular, are notorious for wasting people's time, so it's well worth mastering the skill of running effective meetings.

Being in charge, it’s easy to assume you know what others are saying, or that listening isn’t important and that your solutions are better. But learning active listening is key as it allows early detection problems, avoids costly misunderstandings, and builds trust within their teams. 

With People Outside Your Team

  • Understand fully what your boss wants from you and your team so you'll be better able to meet with their approval.
  • Ask your boss to coach or mentor you. You can usually learn a lot from him, but he may not be proactive about offering this. Think through things as far as you can before you approach them.
  • Look after your team and protect it from unreasonable pressure. Learn skills like assertiveness and win-win negotiation, so you can turn work away or negotiate additional resources.
  • Manage interactions with other groups. Use stakeholder analysis to identify groups relevant to you as well as what they want and what they offer. 

Managing Discipline

When you are faced with potential discipline issues, take time to gather information about the situation, decide what you're going to do, and act. Discipline issues often get worse and rarely go away by themselves, bringing conflict to the team.
Use these rules-of-thumb to decide if you need to take action. If the answer to any is yes, then you need to arrange a time to speak to the employee in private:
  • Does the issue affect the quality of the employee's deliverable to the client?
  • Does the issue adversely impact the cohesiveness of the team?
  • Does the issue unnecessarily undermine the interests of other individuals in the team?

Traps To Avoid

  • Thinking your current job knowledge and technical skills are enough to be a manager. Good management and people skills can be more important than technical skills.
  • Failing to consult regularly with your boss, in an attempt to show that you can cope on your own.
  • Approaching your boss without having thought a problem or its solutions through.
  • Failing to assess what your customers want from you and your team.
  • Using your authority inappropriately or not in the interests of the organization.

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Treat Everyone with Respect

When you're building a team or company, you simply can't afford to lose great people. Treat them with respect and you're one step closer to keeping them on your team long-term.

Encourage Dissent

To do great things, you and your people need to consistently think outside the box. You need people who feel very comfortable disagreeing with you, trying new things, tossing out new ideas, and being okay with the fact that several of their ideas may turn out to be outright awful.

Make the Final Decision and Move On

If you are the manager, make final decisions. And to do so decisively: evaluate all the options in front of you, hear and absorb everyone's arguments, and ultimately make the final call, with arguments. 

Even if you've expressed dissent as an employee, it'll benefit you to let your manager make their call and then focus on what's next, rather than staying preoccupied with past decisions.

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