New Year’s Resolutions Every Manager Should Make

January 1, 2015 - 4 minute read - Posted by

So here we are. A brand new year, and a time to make some serious resolutions. As artificial as it may seem, the start of a new year prompts a lot of us to contemplate some major changes.

Some of you are going to dive head-first into setting ambitious business goals, but what about your people? What are you doing to help them?

If your 2015 goals don’t relate back to your actual employees, you can expect turnover, misalignment, and poor performance. No one wants that right? Great. So let’s do something about it.  Here are seven new year’s resolutions for every boss:

  1. Stop micro-managing. The biggest problem with micro-managing is that most managers don’t think they do it. Yes, delegation can be tough, and yes it really is your reputation on the line, but you need to let your employees do their job. Nothing is more frustrating for employees than managers preventing them from doing the job they were hired for.

  2. Communicate more. The best communicators make the best leaders. We all know this, so why do so many leaders fail to communicate? Make a promise this year to keep your employees informed, and allow communication to flow in both directions. You can do this by asking your employees for feedback and then listening to it.

  3. Start coaching. When you think of yourself as a coach rather than a manager, great things happen. Your employees earn your trust, you get better insight into their strengths, and performance improves overall. Start by meeting individually with employees and learning about what motivates them. Encourage them to share their career aspirations. Then do what you can to help them achieve them.

  4. Get rid of annual performance reviews. No one likes an annual performance review. Not you, not your HR department, and definitely not your employees. There are a lot of better ways to manage performance. Find a process or tool that includes frequent communication, coaching, and task visibility.

  5. Recognize your employees. Organizations whose employees feel recognized outperform those who don’t. Again, common sense right? There are a lot of tools that help with this. At a basic level, and as your first step, go recognize and thank someone’s achievements right now. It likely isn’t hard to spot.

  6. Live your core values. Can your employees recite your core values? Probably not. Most employees are unfamiliar with corporate core values because their work is unrelated. There are a lot of ways to make this happen. One way is to recognize and reward behaviour associated with the core values. However you accomplish it, make this the year your core values stop collecting dust.

  7. Listen to your people.  A lot of managers talk rather than listening. Yet, how are employees supposed to feel valued, engaged and productive when they aren’t being listened to? Start by scheduling 1-on-1s, and refrain from interrupting. Your employees likely have ideas. Great ideas. If you want to know what they are, you need to first listen.

None of these are a surprise right? You likely read enough and know enough to realize investing in your people is going to relate back to the bigger picture. Now it’s time to do actually something about it.


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