For a manager to get the best out of their staff, it’s important that they have the right approach. While people may think that success in a managerial role requires an assertive manner and an iron fist, the opposite is actually true. In fact, in order to foster an environment of connection, commitment and growth, a person needs to manage their workers with emotional intelligence. Doing so will make for a much happier, more productive workplace.
Trauma and abuse therapist Sarah Griffiths knows all about the power of emotional intelligence. So we asked her to share her top tips on using emotional intelligence to lead a team.
Communication is absolutely crucial when it comes to managing a team of employees. It’s so important for a manager to not only stay abreast of what each person is doing, but also for them to understand how the employee in question is coping with the work, whether they are suited to that particular job, and how they could improve. It also helps if the staff feel comfortable talking to their manager about any issues going on in the workplace. That way, they can nip potential problems in the bud and stop them from becoming disruptive.
Celebrating the successes of employees is a must. To get the absolute best out of people, they need to know that their work is truly valued. So a manager needs to be grateful and positive, acknowledge those that are dedicated, and give those who may be slower or newer to the job the encouragement they need to catch up. It can also help to offer some sort of reward to the team, as a monthly meal or drinks. This will motivate and incentivise staff, and help to boost morale.
Managers have to lead by example and set the standard for productivity and behaviour. So it’s important that they practise self-awareness, be mindful of how they are coming across, and always ask themselves how they and their actions are impacting their team. Remember, it is the manager’s responsibility to get the best out of staff.
Lead with empathy
Self-awareness is important, but awareness of how the staff themselves are thinking and feeling is more important still. Empathy really is the key to good management. It forces a person to consider things from someone else’s point of view, and so it encourages a managerial style that is fair, focused, and people-centred. This can help managers to deal with conflict in the office, talk to their employees more effectively, and understand what the staff want out of their working life. As a result, an empathetic managerial style will help to get the best out of staff and create the most positive and productive working environment possible.
Make time for your employees
A common thread running through all of these tips is the fact that a manager absolutely has to make time for the people they manage. Whether it’s talking to them directly about the work they have to do or being more considerate of how they feel about life in the office, prioritising employees is a must for the manager that really wants their team to thrive.