WHAT managers from the rest: they learn what’s so

WHAT GREAT MANAGERS DO  According to Marcus Buckingham inhis article in the Harvard Business review, a typical manager perceivesemployees as worker who fulfil roles. But an excellent manager regardsemployees as individuals to build roles around. Exceptional managers performtheir magic by finding, encouraging, and praising what is unique about each personthat works for them. Although there are as numerousmanagement styles as there are managers, one quality distinguishes greatmanagers from the rest: they learn what’s so special about each person thatworks for them and then focus on it.

They discover what is unique about eachperson and then capitalize on it . . .

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Great managers know and value the uniqueabilities and even the peculiarities of their employees, and learn how best toincorporate them into a harmonised plan of execution. Recognising and takeadvantage of each person’s unique capacity is formidable tool. It saves the organisation time inthe identifying and capitalising on each person’s uniqueness is a powerful toolbecause it saves time in the allocation of roles and makes each person moreresponsible. It also builds a stronger sense of team by reinforcing cooperationand interdependency. It introduces a healthy degree of disruption by shufflingexisting hierarchies and existing assumptions about who can do what. Managers need to know to gatherwhat they know about each person and put their eccentricities to use.

To managepeople well, manager need to learn each person’s strength and what can triggerthese strengths. Excellent managers work around each person style withouttrying to alter them. Most differences in character and talent permanent andresist change. Great managers know that their most important asset is time andthey know that they can make optimal use of their time if they identifyeveryone one’s peculiarity and how to fit them in the big plan. To managepeople well, this demands that the manager knows: ‘their strengths’.  Management of differences  Nevertheless, according to JohnStewart Mill in his book (Management for the Public Domain, 1994), the conceptthat managing the public sector as the private sector is a misconception of ourtime. There are major differences in the management of each sector depending onthe tasks to be undertaken and their context.  The good manager will beone who recognises the need to relate their management style and approach tocontext and task, and this is as important in the public sector as in theprivate sector.

Good example of management of difference can be observed atlocal government, where the difference of services is as such that differentservices are managed in different ways. Steward argues that many of theprevailing management styles promoted for local government assume a uniformityof approach which promises to ignore difference. The assumption thatnon-specific type of management for all situations can be deceptive as itconceals the need for the hard analysis of the nature of task and context.  Task 2 (Evidence for LO 2.2)There are many ways of achievingthe position of project manager within an organisation; working up through theranks, cumulative experience, being in the right place at right time, no oneelse available and so on. However, as projects grow in size, complexity andprestige, client organisations are themselves becoming more sophisticated andso ensuring that the right individual fits properly into the organisationbecomes a priority.

Explain the type of training available, theeducational standards required and the occupational standards demanded of aproject manager that organisations such as Tidal Lagoon Power would belooking for.Mullins, Laurie J. 2010, Management and OrganisationalBehaviour, Financial Times/ Prentice Hall.Approaches to management development Management development should beinterpreted as series of related activities instead of an all-inclusive programme.The inclusion of the word ‘programme’ to describe the process suggests too muchof a cold approach. It is important to start from an understanding of howmanagers learn, as considered below.

 This does not imply that somesystematic is not necessary; first, because many managers must operate inroutine situations and must be developed accordingly, and secondly, becauseorganizations will not continue to thrive if they simply react to events. But it does also not mean that somesystematisation is not needed as many managers work in routine situation andmust develop accordingly. Secondly organisations will have hard time to developif they constantly react to every event. Thoughtful consideration must begiven to approaches that can be used to assess existing managerial resourcesand to develop managers to meet the need of the organisation.Plans must be drawn for thedevelopment of these resources by opting for the best method available.Although this should not be considered as a ‘programme’ composed of complete,highly integrated, and strictly applied range of management training anddevelopment techniques.

The management development activities needed aresubject to the organisation’s technology, environment, and its philosophy. Atraditional bureaucratic mechanistic type of organization may be inclined toadopt the programmed routine approach, complete with a wide range of courses,inventories, replacement charts, career plans and results-orientated reviewsystems. An old-style bureaucratic systematictype of organisation may opt for the programmed routine approach. With manycourses, inventories, replacement charts, career plans and results-orientatedreview systems.In contrast an innovative andorganic type of organisation may justifiably get rid of all these mechanisms.

 Its method would be to offer its managers with the chances, challenges,and guidance they need. Taking this opportunity to give people extraresponsibilities, and ensuring that they receive the coaching and encouragementthey need. Although there would not be anyreplacement charts, inventories, or formal appraisal schemes, but employeeswould be aware of what their objectives and how to achieve them. In this typeof organic and learning organisation, the role of formal training is reducedand is much less than the old-style organisation. As Hirsh and Carter (2002)emphasize: managers still need to learn and management training needs to bedelivered in more flexible and be incorporated in the busy lives of managers.

The development of interpersonal and leadership skills is a high priority andnot easily achieved through conventional formal training. How managers learn It has often been suggested thatmanagers learn to manage by managing, alluding that ‘experience is the bestteacher’. This has largely been proven true, but it’s also true that someemployees learn much better than others. People have different abilities;some managers may just be naturally more capable or exceedingly more motivatedthan others. Some may have had the luck to work with an effective boss who hisaware his or her responsibilities for developing managers. The above quote can have extendedto include that ‘managers learn to manage by managing under the guidance of agood manager’.

Some managers are more talented at developing people thanothers. One of the goals of management development is to get all managers torealise that developing their staff is a significant element of their job. It is of equal importance forsenior managers not to neglect the development of their staff by believing thatpeople do not learn because they are not that way inclined, and to leave it atthat. This could amount to the neglect of their key responsibility to enhancethe performance of the organisation.

Senior managers must therefore strive toimprove the success and potential of their managers. To claim that managerslearn best ‘on the job’ must not lead us to conclude that managers are bestcompletely left their own devices or that management development should be ahaphazard process. The organisation should develop aphilosophy of management development which warrants that regular and thoughtfulinterventions are made to enhance managerial learning. Although Revans (1989)emphasis on taking management development back into the reality of managementand out of the classroom atmosphere, he recognises the importance of thelearning process through ‘action learning’ are necessary.The three basic approaches tomanagement development are: 1. Learning through work; 2. Formal training; and 3. Feedback, facilitation, andsupport.

These can be achieved through bothformal and informal means. (Please see appendices)Armstrong, Michael, 2006, Handbookof Human Resource Management Practice, Kogan Page Task 3 (Evidence for LO 3.1) Working as a project manager forAndritz Hydro would be different in some ways to working as a project managerfor Alun Griffiths Ltd; difference in company culture would be one reason.However, the role of project manager would be essentially the same within eachorganisation. Explain the duties and responsibilities of projectmanagers in construction projects. THE WORK OF A MANAGER  These differences do not just existbetween organisations in the private and public sectors; they are often more amatter of degree. For example, many large business organisations may have morein common in their management and operations with public sector organisationsthan with small private firms.

 In spite, of the parallels in thewide-ranging activities of management, the jobs of individual managers willdiffer extensively. The work of managers is diverse and patchy. Factorsinfluence the work of managers such as: The nature of the organisation, itsculture, philosophy, size, objectives, activities, tasks, employees,technology, and the level in the organisation that the manager is working.External factor may also influence the work must perform. These differences donot just exist between organisations in the private and public sectors; theyare often more a matter of degree.

For example, many large businessorganisations may have more in common in their management and operations withpublic sector organisations than with small private firms.     The environmental setting  An important factor that influencesthe work of the manager is the nature of the environment, both internal andexternal, in which the manager is working. Managers must implement their jobsin the situation in which they find themselves (see Figure 2)