How To Be A Brilliant Manager

Managers are called upon to accomplish a range of tasks and duties which require a strong determination to get the job done correctly. Inevitably there will be an overlap between skills and roles because your competence drives performance in the different roles you will be required to deliver.

There are 10 clear and well-defined Managerial Roles that are needed to accomplish organisational, and personal, objectives. Consider the approach and assess your performance and skills in these developmental areas:

Figurehead role: positive representation of the organisation or department in a range of duties (legal, social, commercial and symbolic activities). This will include signing documents, presenting information internally and externally, meeting with customers and suppliers, etc. How good a figurehead are you?

Leader role: operational management of the area including hiring new staff, coaching for performance amongst the team and evaluating performance both of systems and people. Do you carry out this role effectively or are you bypassed and looked over because this part of the management algorithm is lacking?

Liaison role: the degree to which you interact and engage with others outside the confines of your area of responsibility. This will include the development of relationships that increase you level of power and influence. Having connections and links that you can use are a critical part of being an effective manager.

Monitor role: how good are you at gathering information and dealing with it so that you have material that you can use? How good are you at identifying problems and making an effective diagnosis that deals with the problem and sets a path for improved performance? Do you pass on information and receive information in an appropriate way that adds to the value of output and which maintains working relationships?

Disseminator role: you have information that is not available to other employees and this brings with it responsibility. How do you send information around the operational system and what do you decide to send/not to send? Does the information that you are sending out add to the skills level of those receiving your communication?

Spokesperson role: communication to those outside your unit or area of responsibility is a key managerial skill area. You have a Public Relations role to fulfil which takes place both within the wider structure of the organisation and to the outside world.

Entrepreneur role: your job should be all about making and driving change so that efficiency improves/sales increase/profits rise/failures and re-work is minimised. If the organisation had wanted no changes you would not have been appointed!

Disturbance-Handler role: you must take corrective action when things go wrong. That is your job and it can never be right that you ignore this and wait for someone else to come along and sort it out for you! This HAS to be a critically important part of your duties and should receive a very high level of attention. Unexpected events will always create problems – your job is to deal with them. Whenever they happen. Every time.

Resource-Allocator role: setting up working routines and systems that allow the work to be done. There are very few organisations that exist where resources are plentiful hence a clear framework (that you can justify) are an essential feature of the job! You decide what gets done now, what gets done later and what might never actually get done depending on resources and demands at that time.

Negotiator role: routine and non-routine events and tasks require a calm and steady head in terms of seeking out the best solution. You will have to negotiate with other managers around securing the best possible budget for your area and may have to negotiate with staff around their pay and benefits packages, working hours and time off. Good managers are ALWAYS good negotiators!

The exact mix of the above will depend upon your own unique set of circumstances in your current role, your experiences to date and the external pressures that will seek to modify and shape the purpose of your role on an ongoing basis. Similarly market pressures, the use of technology in completing tasks and external macro-economic trends all impact on the 10 Roles to a differing degree.

Good Luck!

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