The role of a manager is far more complex than that of a subordinate employee. While it may be enough for a subordinate employee to show up on time, do the work they’re asked to do and stay under the radar, managers are expected to do far more. A manager delegates tasks, keeps employees focused and helps them learn and develop professionally.
However, a manager is also responsible for the performance of an entire department or division. He or she must guarantee customer satisfaction, low turnover and workplace safety, among other issues. So, what are companies looking for in candidates for management positions? In a nutshell, they’re looking for driven, dedicated employees with good soft skills, creativity and vision.
A Manager Must Get Results
If a manager’s team fails to perform as expected, the manager is held responsible. When filling a management position, companies look for someone who will go beyond simply following a given set of instructions; they want someone who can create the instructions. A manager must do what needs to be done to produce the required results.
A Manager Needs Good People Skills
To get the results he or she needs from his or her team, a manager must convince his or her subordinates to trust his or her judgment and give their best in terms of performance. A good manager practices two-way communication with his or her employees, listens to their feedback, behaves with consistent integrity and makes sound decisions. He or she will always follow through with his or her promises to show commitment and build trust.
Even more than that, a good manager shows his or her employees that he or she appreciates them. There are many ways to show your employees that you appreciate them, including giving them bonuses and perks but also simply saying “Thank you” when they complete tasks. Good managers also emphasize their employees’ strengths, rather than their weaknesses to boost morale and inspire increasingly improved performance.
A Manager Must Be Able to Lead
A good manager has a thorough understanding of what his or her employees are capable of, so he or she can delegate tasks to those team members most capable of handling them. Delegating tasks shows your team members you trust them to perform well and lets you focus on those tasks that only a manager can perform.
You can lead your employees by giving them the tools they need to succeed and working alongside them to bring projects to fruition. Today’s employees want to be led by example, not by intimidation. Learn more about leadership by enrolling in an online Master of Science in Management program.
A Manager Must Be Comfortable in the Technological Landscape
You might not need the same level of expertise as your company’s IT professionals, but you are going to need a firm grasp of the latest developments in technology and how they affect your company. In the rapidly changing modern world, businesses must be flexible and adapt almost constantly as technology continues to evolve. Companies need managers who will adjust well to new gadgets and new techniques.
A Manager Must Be Creative and Innovative
Creativity and the ability to innovate are two of the most important qualities companies look for in managers today. Innovation is what helps companies stay on top in the increasingly competitive corporate sphere and adapt to the ever-changing marketplace. Creativity is essential not only for developing new products and marketing strategies, but for developing new workplace policies that take into account the many demands of our modern lives. Managers must figure out ways to give employees the perks they need to stay loyal to their companies, like flexible scheduling and telecommuting. It’s also an essential part of creating a strong corporate culture.
Managers need a range of skills that go above what’s required of subordinate employees. Companies want managers who can produce results, come up with new solutions to old problems and effectively manage their team members while inspiring them to new heights. If you’re hoping for a career in management, you’re going to need leadership and people skills, creativity and a results-oriented mindset.
About the Author: Contributing blogger Alayna Johnson has written for a number of business blogs.