Business information written specifically for newspaper advertising departments

Are You a Good Manager?

Eight ways to tell
These qualities can help you re-define your habits as a manager to help your company succeed.

Things are going well. Things aren’t spectacular, but hey, things aren’t terrible either. Although you probably feel that you are doing just fine, and any discrepancy in your department can’t be chalked up to you managerial skills, take a look at these “8 Core Beliefs of Extraordinary Managers” from to either further solidify yourself as an exemplary manager or maybe learn something new that can help turn your department around.

1.Business Is an Ecosystem, Not a Battlefield

The first of these qualities is recognizing that a business is part of a larger organism, one that needs all of its parts to be kept healthy to properly function. The difference between average managers and extraordinary managers in this scenario is the perception that the business environment is symbiotic, not confrontational.

2. A Company Is a Community, Not a Machine

Like the previous quality of highly effective managers, this prefers the human component to a company, and illustrates that if the community is united in serving the greater good, everyone will benefit. The opposite — seeing employees as cogs and incapable of individual thought and micro-leadership — will inevitably hurt the company’s overall goals.

3. Management Is Service, Not Control

This quality may make some managers reevaluate their own preconceived notions of their responsibilities. While we may assume that the word “control” and “manage” are roughly synonymous within the workplace, managing your team is really about finding out what they need to succeed. When they succeed, so do you.

4. Employees are Peers, Not Children

You may feel like you spend a good portion of your day babysitting. And this may be true, so back off and don’t micromanage, this will allow your employees to take charge and succeed?

5. Motivation Comes From Vision, Not Fear

Do you remember the movie “Office Space”? The main character, a disgruntled employee from what can only be perceived as a generic tech bureaucracy, comments that he will only do enough work to prevent himself from getting fired. He also explains that he only does about “15 minutes” of actual work a day. As a manager, this is what failure looks like. Disengaged and fearful employees will only do what they need to get by, however, if they’re are engaged and allowed to take responsibility and ownership of their projects, you will see an increase in not only motivation, but productivity.

6. Change Equals Growth, Not Pain

Nobody likes change. It’s uncomfortable and unknown. That said, change is the only way to progress and make improvements. Nothing is perfect, and expecting perfection to come without making adjustments is the definition of insanity. Extraordinary managers understand the fear behind change, but are able to embrace change instead of run from it.

7. Technology Offers Empowerment, Not Automation

What is the most annoying part of any job? It’s probably not the job itself, but all the busy work required to maintain company infrastructure. Technology is essential for streamlining this process, thus loosening the chains of bureaucracy and allowing employees to be creative and productive in their position. Technology should not be used to sterilize your employee’s work, but to supplement it. 

8. Work Should Be Fun, Not Mere Toil

There is a reason that companies like Google and Facebook have excellent employee retention. Both companies rely on the creativity and innovative potential of their employees and thus create an environment to nurture those qualities. Happy employees that enjoy their work will be more productive with excellent outcomes. If you already expect your employees to hate their jobs, what does that say about the environment that you’ve created?