What is the greatest management attribute?
A good manager needs to rely on a broad range of attributes and skills to perform at their best and to get the most from the people in their team. But is there an attribute that ranks above all others as the most important? Is there one trait that all great managers need to have and develop if they are going to be really successful? Here are a few of the most important attributes. Let us know which you think is the most important, or if something else is even more crucial.
A great manager isn’t going to get very far if they aren’t able to effectively articulate what they need from their team. This means having the confidence to demonstrate that you are capable of making effective decisions, as well as showing that you can be clear on expectations, deadlines and measures of performance. At the same time, communication is a two-way street, so a great manager also needs to be a great listener – able to actively listen to their reports and respond sensitively to their concerns.
A manager needs to have the vision to plan projects over the long-term, foreseeing potential issues and roadblocks, and then taking the action necessary to mitigate their impact. They need to think strategically, and to use what they currently know about a team and its performance, and then apply that to new situations that might require them to work in a different way.
A great manager knows when to give credit for good work, to share the esteem of a successful project, or take a back-seat when a report’s idea has come to fruition. This approach demonstrates integrity – showing your reports that you are prepared to back them when necessary and share praise when needed.
Being a manager can often involve making tough and potentially unpopular decisions. Whether reprimanding someone for poor performance, or taking the ultimate decision to let someone go, it can often be a challenge to remain in a highly-stressed and potentially unpopular role. Self-motivation is crucial at such times, helping managers to focus on their work and what is needed of them, as well as remaining motivated enough to, in-turn, successfully motivate others.
Remaining rigidly fixed to a particular approach to work or the business of managing can often significantly impact on a manager’s capacity to lead their team effectively. Flexibility is crucial, as the need to respond to changing circumstances and conditions is likely to be a constant requirement in any organisation. A manager needs to be adaptable, demonstrating through their actions that the team can flexibly adjust to new challenges.
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