Your managers are in an interesting position. Not only are they leaders themselves, but they are also team members when the hierarchy is considered. This means that as a leader, you must find a way to balance their needs with the overall needs of the company, while still providing the motivation needed to ensure they themselves are effective leaders. I know, this sounds more complicated than it probably is. I find that the best way to manage your managers is to treat them exactly how you would want to be treated in their situation.
Lead By Example
Your company is growing, you are moving forward, and you expect your team to as well. So how do you go about keeping your managers as motivated as you are while encouraging them to push that attitude of growth and positivity down the chain? The first thing you should keep in mind is how to lead by example, exhibiting daily the passion and positivity you have for the goals of your business. This will show your management team that you are focused and moving forward, which will heighten their sense of motivational success. There is more you can do on a personal level as well.
How can you effectively manage your managers if you don’t know their goals? Have those one-on-one conversations with your management team on a regular basis. Show that you are invested in their time, their work and their future — because you are. They are integral to the success of your brand. The human resources manager is just as important as the marketing manager and so on. These are the people in the trenches, running the teams that keep your company humming at peak performance. Don’t overlook their needs and future plans by being complacent.
You want to foster an environment of positivity to keep your company and vision moving forward, so do that. Embrace positive business attitudes in the office and encourage your management team to do the same. Hold regular meetings to discuss current policies and procedures, keeping an eye to efficiencies in team collaboration and general atmosphere. Your managers are extensions of the culture you want to build, so reinforce the idea that you are always looking to move forward and not dwell on past mistakes, but still learning from them. A positive attitude at the top becomes a positive attitude for the company.
Set Expectations and Goals
Not only do your managers have their own goals and aspirations, but they have work to do. Building a company isn’t just about setting positive tones and fostering an environment of growth — it’s about getting work done. In this, you’ll want to set expectations with your managers about how their work relates to them meeting their goals. You’ll want to do this often, as much as every quarter, to show that you are invested in not only your manager on a personal level but the work they are achieving as well. You also will show that you are open and accepting of changing priorities and the suggestions from your management team on how those can benefit the company.
Of course, none of this is possible without the key to most business successes — communication. You may have noticed by now that I stress this point often in these articles. Communication is the most important part of managing anything and anyone. If you aren’t communicating freely and fostering an environment in which managers don’t feel they can openly communicate their issues with you, then failure is imminent. Communicate with your team, even if you have to initialize at first. This will show them you aren’t just a figurehead, that you are invested in them as much as the brand.