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Building a Solid Work Relationship

Daniel R. Tobin and Margaret S. Pettingell offer this advice to leaders and managers about the importance of a positive work relationship between managers and their employees. They write, “The relationship between the manager and the employee is the key to all successful development. No one knows an employee’s strengths, weaknesses, and developmental opportunities as well as the employee and his or her manager.

“Effective development requires that a manager recognize the competencies needed for success in a position and focus time and effort on evaluating each individual, determining strengths and weaknesses, and helping the employee to develop those competencies for the benefit of the employee, the work unit, and the organization. The individual employee, in turn, must be open to suggestions and willing to take on the challenge of learning.

“As they work closely together over time, the manager observes the employee in a variety of situations and forms ideas and opinions about performance and potential. The manager can test those assumptions and discuss them with the employee. The employee, in turn, grows more secure in trusting how the manager assesses his or her strengths, weaknesses, and potential. The relationship develops as the lines of communication and trust build over time.”

Excerpted, with permission of the publisher, from Daniel R. Tobin and Margaret S. Pettingell. Copyright 2008, AMACOM. Published by AMACOM. For more information: www.amacombooks.org

About the Author(s)

Daniel R. Tobin and Margaret Pettingell are coauthors of The AMA Guide to Management Development.