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How to Become a Fearless Manager

by American Management Association 30. June 2011 15:47

Let’s face it; no one wants to be a wimp. Passive leaders lack self-confidence, avoid conflict at all costs, and decide everything by consensus—in other words, progress is slow. It’s certainly easier that way. But as a manager, and a leader, you need to be determined, confident, and bold. Here are some steps you can take to become a confident manager:

Address needed changes. As a manager, you need to confront realities within your organization. Passive leaders shy away from change and prefer to maintain the status quo—“Because that’s the way things have always been done,” is a good enough excuse for the passive manager. But the confident manager knows that statement is paired with another word: “outdated.” Develop vision, strategies, and measurements to bring change to your organization. 

Set the bar high…and act on it. Demand more from your employees, your peers, your superiors, and most important, yourself. If your employees stay late and put in extra hours, stay late too. Those around you will begin to look toward you as an inspiring figure within the company—a truly confident leader. 

Demand accountability and decisiveness. Passive managers tend to spread responsibility across multiple employees or departments, so they can deflect poor results across multiple points. In the end, it’s self-protective, but greatly hampers the ability to get anything done. Consensus must be reached to make any form of decision, and consensus is the enemy of progress. By having single points of responsibility, you remove that need of consensus while also revealing any weak points on your team.

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Thinking Management


7/5/2011 2:34:30 PM #

I disagree with this statement: "If your employees stay late and put in extra hours, stay late too."  It's not always about the number of hours worked.  Actually more and more I believe it's rarely about the number of hours worked, but more about working efficiently.  I also do not want my employees to fall into the trap where they see me working more hours and feel obligated to work more hours, as well.  Perhaps a more effective statement would be, "If your employees are reaching and exceeding the high bar that has been set, ensure that they are recognized for their exceptional work."  I believe that the message should be more about the work quality and not quantity of time spent to get it done.

Katie Schaaf United States | Reply

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