Young Boss Course: How To Develop Key Team Management Skills


How to develop team management skills

There are companies, in which preparation of employees for managing positions begins in advance, for example, with the help of staff reserve programs and “staff heritage”. The problem is that in certain regions such employers are rare phenomenon. Usually placing someone on a managing position happens in a bit other way. Having waken up as a boss for the first time, a person stands in front of a team and feels as if he is a child, who has broken a window in a head's office with his classmates, but everyone else has managed to escape except him, who has been caught and now has to take responsibility for the “common crime”.

How should people act, when they have taken the responsibility to manage a team, but have not managed (had not an opportunity, was lazy, did not consider it was important) to learn the theoretical aspect of the matter? The experts of Resume Writer are going to tell about the skills, which a beginning manager needs to gain first of all, as well as about necessary tools that can help in becoming a good “front man”. Published in our blog post on “Young Boss Course: How To Develop Key Team Management Skills” presents what qualities and skill need to be developed to become a great leader for your team. Certified professional resume writer ResumeWriter knows a thing in suchlike matters and is ready to share it with its clients.

1. Meetings holding

Not productive meetings are “Bermuda's triangles”, in which the time of workers disappears without leaving a trace. On the intuition level everyone realizes it, but according to experts, there are so few bosses who are capable and know how to organize and conduct meetings effectively. What can be said about those who have just started to develop this skill?

1) Friendly talks are a part of a team work as well, but there place is in a cafe, not in a meeting room. Gathering a meeting, it is necessary to define the following points: goal, solutions, which need to be undertaken in the result, possible contradictions and options of their overcoming.

2) Who? It is not obligatory to call to a meeting everyone, who is interested in it or who wants to take a nap calmly in the corner with the only aim – not to work. Only those workers should participate, who have direct relation to the meeting goal achievement.

3) How? Basing on the goals, there are several types of meetings. It can be a meeting to provide workers with information, a meeting, the goal of which is to share the zones of responsibility in a team or discussion of ideas and taking of a single solution on a certain issue.

4) Where? The place has importance as well. To make communication constructive, people need to feel comfortable, need to hear and see each other.

5) When and how long? We are talking about the fact that any meeting should not only start at a certain time and without delay, what is preferable. If a meeting lasts for too long, it is recommended to spend 60% of time on businesses discussion, 20% of time should be left for unexpected problems and the same amount of time should be spent on breaks.

6) Plan and results making. To make a meeting productive (, it is better to create its plan beforehand and announce it to the participants. After that it is necessary to sum up not only in an oral way during the meeting, but also after the meeting in written form. It will be the starting point for implementation of the taken decisions.

2. Aim defining

“Tell me, please, where should I go from here? – Where do you want to get? – I do not care. – Then it does not matter where to go”. This is a famous dialogue between Alice and Cheshire Cat can not be possible in a corporative practice, because any company has aims, which are divided between the departments. Manager is the one who is responsible for the correctness and fullness of aims announcement to the team.

There many schemes on aims defining exist, such as personal and team, but at the beginning of the way you should not try to be too much sophisticated. The famous SMART model will be absolutely enough. It means that you need to answer the following questions when set an aim:

1) what needs to be done?

2) what are the quantitative or qualitative points of result measuring?

3) is it possible to achieve it? Are there necessary resources for it?

4) are you sure there is necessity to achieve it?

5) what is the deadline of an aim achievement?

3. Control of the tasks implementation

Talking about control, most bosses love to control their subordinates. The other question is that not every person knows how to do it correctly. Very often such an important skill is presented in a form of a mere order making. Consequently, the irritation in a team grows bigger and the task implementation does not proceed at all. How it can be avoided? There are several key tools to control how workers fulfill the tasks.

1) Monitoring the duties implementation.

2) Check of the reports that workers make (for example, dairy book).

3) Control with the help of accounts (specialized program software).

4) Meetings tête-à-tête or collective.

Besides, it is important to make the right choice of control form taking into consideration advantages and disadvantages of each of them.

Control based on result. It is good, when boss is sure that an employee perfectly understands the aim and has all the means to reach it. Vise versa, in case of complete non-interference at the fulfilment stage there is a risk of task failure. However, the total control, which completely demotivates any experienced professional, will suit perfectly a beginner, who is not confident about his skills.

Preliminary control. It implies two points: the first one is about third part of time before the deadline, and the second one is the result. The approach is good because on the one hand workers get used to be independent and responsible, and on the other hand, there is possibility to make corrections before the deadline.

Periodic control. It means the check of task fulfilment in approximately equal periods of time. It is used to correct the worker's actions in time when the task is being implemented. Among the advantages we can mention the possibility to plan the control points in advance, and among the disadvantages there is significant time taking from the employer’s side.

Selective control. It is conducted when boss wants and employee is usually not informed about it. The plus of such an approach is objectivity, the significant minus is that many workers treat it as mistrust and desire of a boss to catch them doing something wrong.

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4. Motivating

The issue of motivational influence on workers can be included to the philosophical issues, about which one may think whatever long time. First of all, not to lead the team to the total burnout and depressed state, one needs to master the techniques of feedback providing, or in simple words, boss needs to know how to criticize or praise correctly. Here are several classic tools:

“The sandwich rule”. Giving feedback, at the very beginning it is important to mention what you have got, then what requires to be changed, and finish with a positive note.

"The nine to one rule". There should be nine praise arguments to one remark

Praise. Talking about praise, there are several simple rules. Any praise should be objective and appropriate, i.e. said in time. Special effect has public praise, but you need to be careful with it. If one person is often set as an example for the whole team, it may demotivate others. Also, when you praise someone, it is important to emphasize the value of his professional skills.

Critics. Feedback should have relation to person's activity only, and not his personality.

Motives. A good employer understands the motives of his workers ( There are so many classifications of human motives. The easiest and the clearest for a beginning manager is a motivational model of an American psychologist David McClalland. According to it there are three leading motives: power, engagement, achievement. Knowing them it is easier to understand subordinates and choice effective means of communication, set targets, which will perfectly correspond to inner desires and needs of people.

5. Delegating

Rights skills need to be formed at the very beginning of the way (read post on tips how to survive first week at new job, which will probably bring you much use, if you are a beginner), since it is extremely hard to relearn something. The ability to transfer to subordinates some piece of responsibility is a condition, without which manager physically is not able to solve strategic issues and dedicate time to development his own, his team and common business.

Having defined the task, which requires to be delegated, and a man, who suits this role, boss may start transferring responsibility. There is a couple of key delegation rules:

Desire. A worker should have sincere desire to take a task. Delegating based on a "forced" principle will lead to nothing good. At the same time resistance is quite possible, here it is required to realize why a man does not want to take responsibility. Maybe, he is just afraid not to cope, not to meet expectations of a boss, and now he is looking for support.

Training. To delegate does not mean to “hang” on a worker a piece of duties and run away, having locked him in the office from other side, not to let him go. Transferring duties, one needs to organize kind of a training by showing example and at the same time it is not allowed to forbid something, but to encourage any kind of questions, even if they are the weirdest and primitive ones.

Actions algorithm. It is really essential to announce the strict expectations and provide a person with particular action algorithm.

Feedback. When a worker has knowledge and necessary skills required for tasks implementation, one needs to make sure that he uses them correctly. Of course, nothing happens perfectly at once, and not even from the second and third time.

Control. It implies gradual delegation, giving to a person all the bigger share of independence with control of results.

Naturally, this is just a beginning. In order to become a really productive and inspiring leader, about whom there are legends and talks (ways to increase productivity can be found in our blog), you need to master a lot of qualities, and we are going to consider each of them in detail. But even the mentioned ones are already the start point for successful beginning of a “boss path”. More useful tips published by our specialists can be found on our site in blog section.

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