How to scale company culture for distributed teams
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You’re trying to be a better manager. But search: “How to improve your management skills,” and an avalanche of content buries you.
Here’s where we promise to be different. We’re not just starting from management theory this time. We’re basing it on a two-step process: self-reflection and action.
We’re sharing one of our own in-house management tools. It’s a combo of a survey we’ve expertly compiled, where your answers lead to actionable tips. Because here at Officevibe, we start by developing our own managers and infuse our knowledge and experience into our content. In this self-assessment, we ask you to reflect on five key skills or areas of management: ambassadorship, planning, accompaniment, communication and fairness.
We list some critical introspective questions for each category as well as actionable solutions you can put into practice right away. This is the first step toward answering that burning question of “how to improve your management skills”. Let’s get started!
In this article you’ll learn:
Let’s do a quick warm-up before the survey-tip tool; it’s more of a freethought exercise. Think of all the management skills needed for employee engagement, and put them into three assessment groups. Here’s a brief list of management and leadership skills:
1. To continue working on:
Skills that good managers recognize they’re decent at but could still be improving. Ex: I’m good at communicating expectations to my team at the outset of a project. I need to improve keeping everyone on track without micromanaging.
If you’re confident you’re great at something, embrace it and see how you can apply these strengths to other areas. Ex: I am good at giving positive feedback. What am I doing well here that I should apply when giving constructive criticism?
3. Areas to amplify:
Here’s the room for improvement category. If you recognize something here yourself, chances are your team does too. Self-honesty is the first step toward becoming an effective leader. Ex: My team doesn’t seem confident to experiment and make mistakes. I could do more to encourage them to trust their instincts.
After the initial assessment, we get granular. Our in-house management experts developed these self-reflection questions to guide you. Consider specific areas of your strengths and areas needing improvement, so you can learn exactly how to improve your management skills.
How does it work? Firstly, we share the questions we’ve carefully curated for our survey. For each one, put some honest thought into how you answer, and try to find concrete examples to back up your assessment. The questions are all “yes/no,” and it’s up to you to avoid evasive, half-answers that land in the middle. Because remember, the first step to becoming a better manager is self-awareness.
Here are our instructions:
One thing that makes a company great is a unified vision and set of values. One role of management is to represent the larger organization to their team and get them to buy into those shared goals, culture and overall vision. And when you act as an ambassador, you help your employees feel more connected to the company too.
Do I embody my company’s values for my team and get them to buy-in?
Do my work habits represent my company’s work style, and is my team following along?
Project management skills are highly relevant to your role in managing ongoing work. It combines organization and clear communication, three of the key ways to maintain employee engagement.
Am I making our priorities clear, and is the team staying focused on them?
Do I adequately explain my reasons when I make a decision that doesn’t please everyone?
Accompanying employees means being by their side as they develop. It’s all about coaching and guiding, ensuring they have the best tools and information to do their jobs, but also the right mindset and motivation to continue growing.
Am I giving enough feedback and in the right way?
Does my team know that I’m open to feedback from them?
Do I involve my team enough in setting our goals and objectives?
Have I created a work atmosphere where people feel encouraged to learn and experiment without worrying about making mistakes?
Use Officevibe to provide your team with a safe way to give you feedback. Who knows what you’ll learn when the pressure is off thanks to the platform’s anonymity.
Effective communication skills are about how you mediate between the company and your team and lead people toward a certain vision. It also touches on the more difficult aspects of managing, which require more soft skills and emotional intelligence.
Do I communicate effectively the instructions given to me by my superiors?
Am I managing difficult conversations properly?
Learn how to deliver an efficient communication
Structure your objectives and express them with clarity with this guide.
We all have personal biases and gravitate towards people similar to us. This won’t work in management. Managers need to be inclusive and fair to each member of their team. Fairness is about respect for every member of your team and not abusing leadership privileges.
Do I act impartially and equally fair to everyone on my team?
Am I displaying extra privilege as a manager?
This last question can be the most difficult when it comes to being honest with yourself. It’s here that platforms like Officevibe can give you that extra insight into how your team views the way you handle your managerial position. The anonymity and security ensure you get the tough-loving honesty you need.
As a team dedicated to thinking about all things “managers,” we’re eager to put our money where our mouth is.
This tool and subsequent article result from our proud and conscious push to better answer that question of how to improve your management skills. A great leader looks in before they take action.
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