We all know that having relationships is important (arguable by those who are anti-social – however, since you’re on management’s side you should have some sort of communication skill locked in). Relationships help us flourish in ways we never thought we could. They act as support systems that we never even registered to pay for, encouraging us to do what we thought was impossible. It could be on a personal level with your friends and family or on a professional level; with your colleagues or mentors.
We’ve already come to grips that we should form relationships with your employees and colleagues, all for the need to progress. However, one thing that many managers overlook that’s also what makes or breaks a leader is of your successful organisation that their ability to form relationships with OTHER managers. So to put it into perspective, you may be the chairman you’ve managed to sustain positive figures for the past few years. Although, to really gain that competitive advantage is to come together with your directors and middle management men – on a personal level. You’ll be able to better align common goals with them, which they then communicate across to the rest of the organisation. In a nutshell, it’ll bring together a common purpose for all at an efficient and effective speed.
While we already know that management has the greatest impact on engagement, by engaging your managers you further their engagement with their employees. In essence, it’s a chain reaction whereby you engage your greatest people to engage your greatest people to be. This of course, is all for the spark of productivity to drive performance. This is only just one of the many benefits that can be reaped from forming relationships with managers. What you could also gain without even realising is:
- Bringing about Positive Organisational Change (POC) – Engaging your middle management to see a positive self-concept will help them portray to the rest of the organisation positive perceptions you instil of change. It’s a win-win situation.
- Communication strengthens for trust – Not only does the right information get sent across to your middle management (and the rest of your organisation), but a circle of trust develops. This trust will enable you to access never before seen insights of your managers’ thoughts. Opinions, ideas, remarks and solutions that you wouldn’t have had thought of on your own are just a few to mention.
- Your role becomes more enjoyable – While managing not only your company but the people who run your company is a lot to handle, it can be fun at the same time. In amidst of collaborating a new financial year together, the time leading up to the finish can be anticipated with a planned team dinner (talking things other than business, of course). Or, by cracking a few inside jokes throughout breaks just make it a little more bearable.
- Discourages any conflict – When you work in harmony with your leading men, the chances of misunderstood disagreement arising is slim to none. In doing so, activities sail smoothly without the need to resolve emerged conflicts. In a sense, it’s a schedule sticking benefit as time is consumed on the right tasks.
- A domino effect of productivity – As I’ve mentioned, it’s a win for all. You engage your greatest men to realise their potential or further their strengths. Effectively, they’ll reflect what they’ve learnt through this process upon the people they manage – the company’s employees.
A better thing to explore is how we can equip ourselves to delve deep into these desired benefits that most want. As a manager yourself, the following below utilises a greater number of your human skills as a leader:
- Align change with existing values – to spread POC, you’ll need to ensure that any change you implement is consistent with your leading men’s’ roles. If you want your organisation to react in a positive way, make sure they even out with existing company values.
- Identify needs from your relationships – Understanding management either beside or below you will involve looking at the needs. Satisfy those needs – whether it be certain KPI’s they want done or assistance with deadlines. By doing so, they respond positively being more willing to go on board with your ideas.
- Make time to build relationships – It could be as simple as organising lunches or dinners whereby you discuss things other than business. It’s given time to understand each other on a level other than professionally, in other words, a personal level. Doing just this, builds an emotional commitment. It’s a commitment stronger than any other.
- Learn to listen – Your leading men will respond to you if you actively listen. If you’re all ears attending to any ideas expressed, you build more trust. That trust of course, we know will help you delve deeper into never before seen thoughts.
- Appreciate your leading men – As part of any type of engagement, you’ll need to appreciate them, the same way they appreciate the rest of the company’s employees. It could be as simple as rewards and incentives aligned to their needs and/or wants or simply; an act of recognition.
Having already mentioned that you’ll be needing to use mostly your human skills to engage your managers, its success is dependent on your emotional intelligence (EI). In other words, your ability to relate and respond to others’ emotions. It’s an aspect of this human skill needed to gain the benefits we’ve discussed from forming relationships with your managers.
You may seem to have everything under control or believe that your Leading Men will have everything under control; but you need to be truly confident in this belief. To be truly confident with this belief is by engaging your managers’ through relationships you form with them. Gain their emotional trust to bring together what you envisaged. Trust goes a long way and quite frankly, emotional trust is stronger than superglue.
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