In today’s fast-paced business world, managers cannot afford to rest on their laurels. Past achievements do not guarantee future success. Being an effective manager in these financially turbulent times means not only staying one step ahead of the competition, but also ensuring you have the full support of your staff. Take a look at these five top techniques for effective management that have helped those in the know stay at the top:
1. Communication: It’s good to talk. But it is also imperative to consider the full gamut of communication tools at the manager’s disposal. Most businesses have an external communications policy in place, but some fall short of the mark when it comes to internal strategies. Online communications are an effective way for mangers to keep staff abreast of new developments and incentives. And social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook are now being recognized in the workplace as fun and accessible ways for managers to communicate with staff.
2. Brainstorming: A problem shared is a problem halved, as the old adage goes and brainstorming has long been seen as the perfect way to get the creative juices flowing. This powerful technique is at its most effective when a ‘leader’ is guiding the process. Never was a flipchart and marker pen put to better use than when capturing those light bulb moments of inspiration. Encouraging staff to contribute to the development of ideas not only raises team moral, but is also a great rapport building exercise.
3. Delegation: Where would Sir Richard Branson be if he tried to do it all himself? Not where he is now! Delegation not only benefits the business, but also the individual. Staff members feel trusted and involved when given a task they find challenging. And if new skills are being learned in the process, all the better. Over-achievers can often be afraid to ‘let go’ and hand elements of the job over to others. But once mastered, the art of delegation is a manager’s secret weapon.
4. Time Management: Ever found yourself rushing to reach a deadline? Arriving hot and flustered to a meeting? Gripped by panic when you realize an order has not been placed? The importance of good time management skills must never be underestimated. Successful techniques include allocating proper time for planning, setting realistic goals for the completion of work, working to a daily, monthly and annual schedule of activities and monitoring the progress of longer term projects. Stay cool, stay calm and stay collected.
5. Conference Calling: New technology keeps businesses thriving. Before the computer there was the typewriter, before the conference call there were expensive travel arrangements and loss of productivity while people left one task to attend meetings physically. What better technique can a manger have, quite literally at their fingertips, than bringing all relevant business parties together for the price of a phone call? Companies such as www.conferencenow.co.uk even provide the service for free. Busy managers know it makes sense.
Guest Author: Matt Smith is a freelance business, conference calling and technology blogger.