As an outsider (corporate outsider, that is), it seems unbelievable to me that managers don’t make a point to communicate/get to know their team. I can understand the desire to keep secrets/keep things non-transparent, but I liken that to being a wimp. A pushover. And other terms. Thatâ€™s just weak. If you are the best, you should have nothing to worry about, challenge that. Be the best. Let your guard down and ask questions.
Here’s something I was talking about with my uncle yesterday: You get into upper management because you are a gal/guy who can get things done. You got there because you are a top performer. Now you’re leading a group and you think you have to continue doing the same thing. So, you crack the whip and push your team hard. You work 90hrs vs 60 because “you know best.” Nothing happens.
Here’s what I think: Rethink the position you are in. A great manager/exec is a coach/a teacher. Youâ€™re not there to continue doing what you did. Youâ€™re there to teach your whole team how to achieve, like you used to. To do this successfully, be a good teacher you have to stop doing, doing, doing and start talking, communicating, getting to know your team, understanding why each of them do things the way they do. Allow yourself to empathize with them, and they with you.
This is good for two reasons. 1. If they can see themselves within you, and they respect you, it will encourage them, motivate them. 2. If you can empathize with them then you can understand their intentions. Understanding their intentions is like understanding their thought process.
Where did I come up with this response? I thought about what I learned from the ad industry: How to reach and know your target market. â€¦The same principles apply to so many domains. Listen. Communicate. Ask questions. Achieve empathy.