6 Key Competencies of Effective Managers

Too many employees are promoted into management positions without understanding key competencies that will enable them to be effective managers.

For years we’ve been hearing that people don’t leave their jobs; they leave their managers. Despite this knowledge, many employees are promoted into management positions without understanding key competencies that will enable them to be effective managers. 

Here are six key competencies I have seen in successful managers:

1. Proficient communication skills: Managers who are skillful communicators listen with full attention to employees concerns, adapt their communication based on each employee’s personality style, and manage conflict in a way that all parties experience a satisfactory outcome.

2. Understand multigenerational workforce trends: Baby Boomers, who once dominated the workforce, now are beginning to retire. Our youngest employees, the Millennials, soon will be the largest cohort in the workforce and have very different work styles than previous generations. Effective managers understand the needs of the different generations and adapt accordingly.

3. Provide high-impact performance feedback: To help employees to develop to their full potential, effective managers know how to provide frequent positive and constructive feedback in a way that motivates both under-performing and high-performing employees.

4. Focus on employees’ career development needs: A key reason high-performing employees stay at their jobs is because they have the opportunity to learn and grow. Effective managers develop career development plans with their employees and follow up to ensure the plans are implemented.

5. Maximize your leadership strengths: A strengths-based management style ensures that managers are aware of their own strengths and interact with employees and the leadership team in a way that capitalizes on their own strengths. Effective managers are also aware of their employees’ strengths and consciously create development opportunities that maximize employees’ strengths.

6. Advocate organizational changes necessary for developing and keeping top talent: Organizations often need to make adaptations in their structure and policies in order to develop and keep a high-achieving workforce. Effective managers are skilled at helping senior management understand the need to make changes that satisfy employee needs and create a thriving organization.

Alisa Blum, president of Alisa Blum & Associates, specializes in optimizing the multigenerational workforce. Detailed company information can be found at www.developtopemployees.com. Blum can be reached at 503.524.3470 or alisa@developtopemployees.com.

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