If you are like a majority of souls in the American workforce these days you have a manager that struggles with basic managing skills. Unless they are from the Baby Boomer Generation, they were probably never trained how to communicate with staff and were left to figure it out for themselves. Some skills can be self-taught, while other skills need to be learned from others.
Most managers will find it hard to self-evaluate, so think about how well your manager communicates in the following categories, and maybe take note of how well your manager knows how to manage you.
- When you interviewed with your manager, did they really know what kind of person and skill set they wanted for the job and ask appropriate questions to reveal if you were a good fit? Or did you have to control most of the interview in order to keep the conversation productive?
- Did your manager conduct an orientation on day one that introduced you to your work area, fellow staff, and facilities and assign someone to shadow until you got oriented?
- Did your manager communicate in writing and verbally your initial job functions and expectations? Did they do this every time they increased or changed your responsibilities?
- Did your manager arrange for internal training and/or guided on the job training with another employee? Do they check in with you after any training to see how they can help you use what you learned on the job?
- Does your manager know how to deliver constructive feedback, coaching and motivation to keep you focused and productive? Does your manager reward and recognize a good job?
- Does your manager know how to communicate and evaluate overall performance so that you feel it helps you improve as well as feel valued?
- Does your manager conduct regular staff meetings that keep the team informed on progress, accomplishments and changes?
I want all of you to remember that the above abilities to communicate to staff are basic skills. They are not in any way leadership level competencies, but skills every single manager in America should be able to perform if they are managing people. If they fail at any of these basic skills, they fail in their role as a manager. This is why it is so unfair to promote people into supervision or a management role just because they were good at the function they now manage without added training in management communications.