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By Jolie Miller | Tuesday, March 03, 2015

Are You Ready to Be a Manager? 6 Things You Should Know

Ready to be a manager? Find out

They’re everywhere. You’ve seen them. Maybe you’ve even worked for them:

Bad bosses.

From the micromanager to the tyrant to the checked-out guy who’s never available, bad managers make the work life miserable for everyone around them.

Too many people are promoted up the corporate ladder without the skills they need to lead.

Management isn’t for everyone, and it shouldn’t be. If you’re in line for a promotion or dream of a taking a leadership position someday, do yourself and your potential future team a favor: Take time to assess whether you’re truly ready to be a manager — and a good one at that.

Here are the six things I wish I’d known when I stepped into my first management job years ago.

By Todd Dewett | Thursday, January 15, 2015

The 4 Skills You Need to Be a Better Manager This Year

want to be a better manager?

You’ve heard the saying: People who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones. In other words, it’s unwise to criticize others when you, too, are flawed. Many consider this sound advice, but the adage creates a conundrum for people in positions of leadership.

On one hand, holding others accountable is one of the core duties of leadership. It often involves delivering difficult feedback or making difficult decisions such as letting people go. On the other hand, holding people accountable makes everyone want to examine you and your work more critically. The higher you climb the ladder, the more this is true.

To survive life in the glass house—and in fact to be a better manager than you are now—you must develop a few skills that weren’t as critical early in your career. I’m going to tell you what they are and how to get them.

By Bob McGannon | Saturday, January 10, 2015

5 Tips for Managing Remote Employees

managing remote employees requires frequent check-ins

Earlier this week, we offered tips for setting up a workspace at home, and establishing routines as a remote worker. This article focuses on off-site team members from another perspective: Managing remote employees.

Managing people who work at home, in other office locations, or even in other countries is a reality many leaders face these days. It comes with some challenges, certainly—but when location isn’t a factor, you also have the opportunity to tap into the greatest mix of available skills to pull off your project objectives.

To help you be an effective manager with a far-flung team, here are five tips critical to your success.

By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Solve Ethical Dilemmas at Work — with These Tools

Get tools to handle ethical dilemmas at work

Sad but true: We all face ethical dilemmas at work, and have to make decisions that will test our values.

Lots of experts have devised ethical decision-making models to help us, but many are complex or too theoretical.

In this week’s Management Tips, I’ll offer you a simple and practical way to find productive answers the next time you face an ethical dilemma.

By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Avoid the Peter Principle: Prep Your Employees for Promotion

don't let the peter principle guide your promotions

This week’s Management Tips episode addresses a damaging organizational reality: the Peter Principle.

Named after Laurence J. Peter, coauthor of a popular 1969 management book, the idea suggests that people rise to their level of incompetence.

In other words, successful people are often promoted. But the promotion is based on success in their current role—not necessarily their ability to be successful in the new role. Thus, they often fail in their new position.

By Izzy Gesell | Monday, September 29, 2014

Become a Better Leader — with Improv Theater Skills

2014_09_29_improv_sf

Becoming an effective leader is a challenging undertaking. Trying to map a success route from the myriad overlapping or contradictory leadership theories is like being on a journey where your GPS changes its mind every few miles.

But what if I told you that you can improve your leadership skills by practicing the skills used in improv theater?

It’s true. And I’m going to show you how.

By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, August 27, 2014

How to Work with a Difficult Boss

2014_08_27_MTbadboss

Here’s an uncomfortable but inevitable truth: Sooner or later, we all have to work for people we don’t like!

Hopefully, this won’t happen to you too often—and when it does, let’s hope it doesn’t last.

But when you’re in the middle of it, you need to know how to effectively navigate the situation.

By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Managing in Bureaucracies

dewett_mt_general_series

There’s some irony in the life of an organization. One the one hand, success leads to necessary growth in the organizational hierarchy and the overall amount of bureaucracy. On the other hand, that fact often erodes managers’ ability to feel empowered to make decisions.

Reclaiming your decision-making ability when needed is in many ways about fighting bureaucracy. The first tip this week addresses this challenge. Let’s be clear, no wildly successful person achieves success without locking horns with a few bureaucrats over policies. Not all tape is red, nor do all bureaucrats create roadblocks–but successful leaders see the difference and effectively manage tricky bureaucratic situations.

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