Sunday, February 28, 2016

20 Management Do's and Don'ts

1. DO: Treat your employees, direct reports, or subordinates as human beings and colleagues.
DON'T: Treat them as units of production or inferiors.

No one likes being treated like a mind numbed robot or a beast of burden.  We’re all human beings with our own struggles, hopes, dreams, friends, and family who want to live up to our full potential.

2. DO: Treat your employees as volunteers.
DON'T: Treat them as slaves or indentured servants.

We’re no longer living in the 19th Century; slavery and indentured servitude are now illegal.  Your employees volunteered to work for you, so treat them as volunteers who could voluntarily go to work somewhere else. When you take away people's freedom, it denigrates them.  Don’t hold their job security, salary or benefits over their heads to motivate them.

3. DO: Serve others.
DON'T: Expect others to serve you.

Management is really about serving others: customers, employees, subordinates, colleagues, superiors etc. Being a manager does not make you Lord of the Manor.

4. DO: Ask people.
DON'T: Tell people.

Asking others rather than telling others is in keeping with treating employees as volunteers and not indentured servants. Taking away someone's self-determination denigrates them and ultimately lowers productivity. You'll get the best work out of people if you allow them to make their own choices.

5. DO: Love people.
DON'T: Love money or things.

History is full of examples where people's love of money and things led to their downfall. Nothing good comes from putting money and things ahead of people.

6. DO: Lead your employees.  
DON'T: Manage your employees.

You can manage things, but you must lead people.  Get your employees to want to follow you; get them to want to take a bullet for you. When you reach that point with your followers, they'll give you their best work.

7. DO: Allow your employees to lead and manage themselves, their projects, and their time.
DON'T: Micro-manage your employees.

It’s counter-intuitive, but the more you empower your employees the more they’ll produce.  Set expectations and goals, but let them produce the results.
  
8. DO: Thank, praise and expect the best from your employees.
DON'T: Criticize, complain, condemn, judge or expect the worst from your employees.

The Pygmalion effect is the psychological phenomenon whereby the greater the expectation placed upon people, the better they perform. Whereas, the opposite of lower expectations placed upon individuals leads to poorer performance.

9. DO: Be honest and forthright with your employees.
DON'T: Be dishonest or disingenuous with your employees.

No one likes being lied to. No one likes being played.  You’ll lose the trust of your employees if you’re anything but honest.  If you need to keep something confidential, simply tell them you’re not at liberty to discuss that with them. They'll understand.

10. DO: Keep secrets and confidences.
DON'T: Betray someone’s confidence or spill the beans.

No one will confide in you if you’re known to spill the beans or betray their confidence.

11. DO: Set realistic and attainable goals and deadlines.
DON'T: Set unrealistic and unattainable goals or deadlines.

No one likes being pressured to perform.  Good work takes time, so give it time.  If you need something completed quickly, consider adding more people to work on the task, or rolling up your own sleeves and pitching in to help. Remember that prior planning prevents piss poor performance.

12. DO: Be humble, honest, ethical, and moral in everything you do and say.
DON'T:  Sacrifice your soul for profit, possessions, power, position, prestige, privilege, popularity, pride, or pleasure.

Always seek to do the right thing even if it hurts you personally. Goodness and virtue always triumphs over evil and vice.

13. DO: Be forgiving of others and seek forgiveness for any hurt you’ve caused.
DON'T: Hold grudges, give into anger, be vengeful, or be unforgiving of others.

When you forgive others, God will forgive you.  So forgive and try to forget.  Bless those who hurt you or slander you. Always take the high road.

14. DO: Work passionately, enthusiastically, and confidently with humility.
DON'T: Have a poor work ethic.

You owe it to yourself and many others to work hard.  Hard work is good for the soul.  Laziness is nothing to be proud of.

15. DO: Keep your priorities straight.
DON'T: Put work and your time ahead of your family.

You owe it to your family to make them a top priority in your life.  If you have to consistently work overtime, maybe your organization needs to hire more people, or share your workload with others.  Also, you can share your workload with your willing employees who want to advance their careers.

16. DO: Build a safe and supportive work environment.
DON'T: Use fear and intimidation to motivate your employees.

Numerous studies have shown that building safe and supportive work environments leads
to higher productivity and loyalty. Managing by fear and intimidation will work in the sort
term but never in the long term.

17. DO: Stay in control of your emotions.
DON’T: Lose your cool.

Losing your temper or composure is never productive or good for moral. If you’re upset with someone, take a walk and cool off.  It’s better to be silent and thought to be a fool than to speak and prove to be one.

18. DO: Seek peace and harmony.
DON’T: Argue or live in conflict with others.

Seek first to understand then to be understood. 

19. DO: Praise and reward good behavior.
DON'T: Reward bad behavior.

There's nothing more discouraging to good employees who work hard and produce to get the same rewards as bad employees who don't.

20. DO: Hold others accountable for their behavior and results. 
DON’T: Look the other way, or turn a blind eye.

It’s only right and just that good behavior should be rewarded and bad behavior should not.

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