Terry Thompson, Surrey, BC, CYBF Mentor, tesh@shaw.ca

There are many ways that managers can spend their time. Below are the ten activities that I believe, if performed properly, have the biggest impact on the quality of a manager’s performance.

  1. Recruiting and screening quality candidates for positions within the manager’s team (even if positions aren’t currently available);
  2. Supporting their subordinates’ efforts to:
  • Identify and reach their goals;
  • Become self-sufficient in all material aspects of their job description.
  1. Building a business plan for the year and, in the case of senior managers, beyond (including obtaining feedback from key subordinates and communicating the final plan to her/his team);
  2. Monitoring and comparing actual results to their plan (daily, weekly, monthly as appropriate), sharing them with the team and eliminating negative variances by determining the appropriate corrective action(s);
  3. Continuously revising their plan to include unforeseen factors or events;
  4. Communicating (to and from) with his/her subordinates and his/her manager as follows:
  • The company’s and team’s vision, mission, values and strategic objectives, and ensuring that they are understood and supported by her/his subordinates;
  • Reinforcing good behaviour (daily if appropriate), and complimenting good work whenever it is noticed, by letting the individual know what they are doing well or why it’s particularly exceptional, so that they repeat good practices;
  • Correcting poor behaviour (daily if appropriate), and advising an individual that there is a preferred method;
  • Overall performance of the team and individual subordinates within;
  • Obtaining feedback from subordinates on concerns or suggestions for improvement.
  1. Performing control activities (daily/weekly/monthly) that are key to minimizing risk and maximizing profit in an effective and timely way;
  2. Recognizing best practices and identifying strategies to further improve team members;
  3. Time management; and
  4. Personal development, particularly regarding management and business skills.

The next article will discuss the main reasons why most managers do not spend enough time on these activities and, quite often, are not as effective as they could be when they do perform them.

Should you have any questions or feedback regarding the content of this article please email Terry Thompson at tesh@shaw.ca ©

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