DEVELOP HIGH LEVEL MANAGEMENT SKILLS
One definition of management is “the art of getting things done through people” (Mary Parker Follett). Management is also used to refer to the people who get things done. Therefore, we might say that management is a process by means of which managers define and achieve organisational goals to increase the likelihood of success.
Because people are the key to effective management, communication skills are essential management skills. Without clear and effective communications, the different people and sections within an organisation will not know they or each other are doing, or required to do, or why things are done as they are. Uninformed or poorly informed employees tend to be less motivated, and will certainly be more likely to make errors. Also, their morale is more likely to fall. This is why communications is a core subject in this advanced certificate.
Note that each module in the Qualification - Diploma In Management is a short course in its own right, and may be studied separately.
Managers need Diverse Skills
The first task of a manager is to know their own job. A manager who does not know and understand their own job will almost certainly not know their subordinates jobs. It is important to ensure that you are clear about what you do and what your staff do.
Managers are concerned with every aspect of an organisation, In small enterprises, it can be relatively easy to be involved with "everything"; but as organisations get larger, and more is being done in an organisation, it becomes physically impossible for a manager to know as much about each part of the organisation; as what the subordinates do, Good managers need good employees, and the skills and personality that allows them to effectively delegate in order to get things done.
In some large organisations part of the long term view of management is to see that the top managers have worked their way up through the company and ideally experienced working in each sector at various levels on the coal face. In this way they know and understand the roles of the various departments and sectors of the business and so gain an understanding of how everything works at all levels. This gives them unique insights, empathy and understanding for decision making in management.
Getting the Right Staff
Getting the right staff can be hard. A person may look ideal at an interview, but in the job setting they may be terrible. They may have the right qualifications, but not know how to put them into practice. They may have a great deal of work experience, but be stuck in a certain way of doing things that does not work well within your organisation. They can also appear stunning in their overall appearance, have the ‘gift of the gab’ in self-promotion and talking about their skills and potential, but when in the real work situation fail to perform or fulfil promises.
Finding the right staff members takes effort. It is important to decide exactly what the job is that you want to fill – what do you expect the person to do? Then think what sort of person you want to do that job. Before placing a job advert, ensure you are clear about exactly what qualifications, personality and work experience you want from the person. Time spent in this area is WELL SPENT. If you are clear in your mind what you want, what skills are needed, what the role/s are that need to be performed and the level of expertise required - and can express this in the job advertisement clearly - then you are more likely to find the type of candidates you need.
Often as a cost saving measure job advertisements are short and succinct and do not give enough detail as to what is required or what the job really is. If you haven’t thoroughly gone through the process of deciding what exactly you are looking for, you may find that the people that apply are not a match for the skills and talents that you require. If it is not until the interview process that you realise what it is that you require, you may have to start the recruitment process again. This process in itself is costly to do over and over rather than get it right the first time.
Recruiting new staff also takes away precious work hours out of the business. While existing staff are in the process of interviewing and recruiting, work is piling up on their desks and important jobs are not being done. This is sometimes why companies choose to employ a recruitment company to do all the advertising and selection for them. In the end though this process is only as good as the company you employ and their staff. To get the best you will have to pay very high rates, often on an hour by hour or daily basis. The company needs to be extremely well briefed in detail on what your company does and exactly what you are looking for in order to do their job well. In the end, you as the manager are the one who should know the roles and exactly what you are looking for and how a particular applicant would fit in to your existing staff; so it is up to you to make the important decision in the end - whether you have the recruitment company sort through people on your behalf and try and save your company time, or whether you carry out the whole process yourself.
Many people will probably apply for the job. But only a certain percentage of those will have the right experience and qualifications that you want. Don’t be too strict about what you are looking for in terms of exact experience and qualifications though, sometimes someone may seem “not quite right” but could be fantastic. It is not always the best dressed and the best on paper that will be the best staff member/ performer for your business.
So you have some applicants who look suitable on paper. Now think what you are looking for – do you want someone who is:
- Good with people?
- Willing to work extra hours when necessary?
- Work flexibly – early mornings/late evenings or even shift work?
- A good sense of humour?
- Attention to detail?
- Able to use initiative and creativity?
- Able to precisely follow orders and directions?
- Tidy and neat when packaging items?
- Patient and empathetic?
- Able to work well under pressure and in stressful situations?
Think about the people you already employ. Look at the ones who do the job well. What do they offer? What skills do they possess that you are looking for? What skill overall is missing from your team that if found will complement it? This is the key to a good team, that members and their skills and talents complement one another and support the managers and overall objectives. Before you finally offer an applicant a job it is imperative that you check their credentials thoroughly and speak with referees for credibility. Many managers have been caught out by assuming the stated qualifications of a team member were true and not fictitious. Some applicants will do anything to get a job. If a problem arises later on with this staff member and the company and it is discovered all their qualifications were actually false and they have not been trained for the position, you as manager will be accountable for ensuring the qualifications actually checked.