Management is no easy task. As managers, we dedicate ourselves to managing all of the responsibilities that we are handed down.
There are a host of reports, budgets, conference calls, policies, procedures, analysis, hiring, firing, documentation and the list goes on and on and on. How is this humanly possible? Have managers been forced to accept that in today’s economy corporate America requires that we all work two jobs for the price of one? I would venture to guess that it has been accepted as a “new challenge” for those managers that want to retain employment.
These circumstances then beg the question, “Who is managing the people?” Where do we find the time and what can we do to be the most effective managers? The answer must first be qualified by saying; we can’t simply hope that our staff can manage themselves or each other. After all, as managers our first priority must always be to manage our people. Yes, we do lead first. We do mentor, guide, direct and coach, but ultimately as managers it is our responsibility to manage the people that in turn manage their tasks and priorities. In taking that role we also ultimately agree to play a number of other roles. I offer to you that there is a specific L.I.N.E. that managers can walk to get the most out of their staff.
There are truly four job titles that we must take on to meet the needs of any department. This applies to not only the people we manage, but in our personal lives as well. Think back to most effective manager you have worked for in your career. Was he/she able to mentor the staff, be inquisitive, listen to needs and concerns, and always seek fair and/or creative solutions? If the answer is yes, then your boss understood the value of walking the L.I.N.E. How about you?
L is for Leadership. This type of leadership that can inspire, guide and motivate us to reach our goals. Leadership is a finely tuned, confident and thoughtful process. Leadership is not telling others, but rather motivating by example while explaining the values and benefits of success.
I. is for Investigator. The role of the investigator encourages our sense of fairness as we Make ourselves responsible for finding the truth of a matter. Investigating an incident, a discrepancy, a complaint or a dispute belongs to the manager and should never be delegated to a staff member.
N. is for Nurse. The traditional characteristics of a nurse are that of understanding, compassionate, dedicated listener and healer. While a manager will not delve into nursing personal, non-work related issues, he/she will seek to be empathetic and remedy oriented. The nurse always considers the needs of the human spirit.
E. is for Engineer. What an exciting challenge the engineer holds in stepping outside of the box. There is tremendous opportunity for the manager that defines success as reaching objectives without mandating identical paths to get there.
About the Author
Sheri A. Callahan has 13 years of combined responsibilities in consulting; workforce development training; public speaking and business management. Sheri is often called upon for keynote addresses, public seminars, on-site training and performance consulting for a variety of organizations.