CEO – Often it seems that managing people is like a rocket science. Even sometimes a CEO who is the best in the world find it really tough to deal with their employees. But why it’s so tough to manage people? What do we need to understand to better manage them? What the rock star CEO does to manage and lead people?
In this article, we will try to find the answer. We will talk about why a CEO finds it easy to manage people whereas another struggles to get their employees to do a thing. We will also talk about how you can better manage people and how you can increase the productivity of your organization even if you’re not a CEO.
Why few CEO find it difficult to manage people?
The answer is simple but not many take the time to find it out. Here it is – The people who work for you don’t care what you know about. They don’t get bothered about how much money you make, how many degrees you have or how eligible you are to run the company. The only thing they care about is how much you care about them. And that’s it.
People are not foolish. They know whether you are only thinking about profits or you really want to add value to them. Even if you pretend to help them, you will not succeed. You need to truly care for them to become an extraordinary people manager.
Take the example of a military officer and how he manages. He never feels it difficult to manage people. Why? He will give up his life for saving his people. He cares for them too much and his people get that and can do anything for him. They don’t care what the military officer knows or how eligible he is. Only thing they care about is how much he cares and values them and that’s it. That’s how he manages.
This is the secret. Most people go to the store and buy books on managing people but if you can only learn how to really care about your people, they will care back. They will give their heart and soul to making you and your organization profitable.
But how would you do that?
How to care for your people in real sense?
No, there is no hard and fast rule to care for your people. But still we will give you some advice. That may not be like any business books. But they are fundamentals to manage people well.
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#1. Be a good human being first
A good human being cares about another human being. Before you think yourself as a manager or as a person who holds better rank than his/her subordinates, first know that you are a human being. At the end of the day, it won’t matter by keeping your ego, trying to prove you’re better than your subordinates and treating them like they don’t know anything. You need to be a good human being by heart and guess what you don’t need to manage them. They will do work for you. They will do it from their heart.
#2. Add value to their jobs
Teach them skills. Help them learn. Don’t scold or scream at them because they are working under you. Be patient with their pace of learning. We understand that there’s a huge cost of teaching them skills and to you time is very much valuable. But we would say that more than anything people are valuable to you, not profit. If you add value to enough people, then you don’t need to worry about profit anymore. Your people will stand by you and generate profit by working harder, being more productive and being more generous with their time. And you don’t need to manage them ever again.
#3. Understand their inherent motivation to manage well
If you can understand each and every person closely you will see that they all are motivated by one or two intrinsic values. Some get motivated by being in a group which help each other. Some get their mojo by learning new skills. And some by being able to take more responsibility. Understanding each person in your team is very important if you want to manage them well. As Dr. Stephen Covey said – First understand if you want to be understood.
#4. Don’t treat them as resources
People are not resources. They are more than that. Organizations all around the world are realizing that and thus why human resources are now termed as human capital. They are your capital to catapult your business. So treat them as you want to invest in them. You want to grow them. And you care for them. As a result, you will get back benefits in multi-fold.
#5. Add value to their life
They are human beings and they have a life too. By ensuring that you care for them (not only for their professional development but for their personal development as well), you will actually invest in your organization. If you manage a team, you need to know your team members through and through. You need to understand their strengths, weaknesses, personal issues and professional achievements. And you need to really make time to help them in all these areas. If you are too busy to make profit, you will never learn become a good people manager.
Have you ever parented? Do you know why children develop fear and shame and guilt? Babies are not born with all these negative emotions but how come they develop these negative thinking? When they grow up, their parents always catch them doing things wrong and guess what they develop a feeling that they are not good enough in anything. And they develop negative emotions. Now if you always catch employees with what they’re doing wrong, you will develop negative emotions in them. No, you don’t need to support the things they are doing wrong. You need to help them grow. And whenever you see that they’re doing something good, go and appreciate the employee in front of everyone. And you will see the magic. If you can do it once a day for a year to every employee you manage, you don’t need to worry about the organization anymore.
#7. Be a situational leader
There are a lot of confusions and arguments about what leadership style will suit a team or an organization! Yes, it mostly depends on the organizational culture. But moreover, not every situation is similar and only one type of leadership will not be suitable. For example, in your organization, you follow a participative model of leadership. But there are two employees who are never working. No matter whatever you do for them, you don’t see any improvement in their work. You need to go deep and understand why they are not working. Is there any personal issue bothering them? Or they are simply lazy. Accordingly you need to devise the leadership style and act. For some situations autocratic leadership and managing style will be helpful. For other situations more liberal attitude should be shown.
#8. Ask a beautiful question to yourself
Ask yourself – What one thing you can do for your employees so that they will think twice before leaving the organization? We don’t know what situation you’re in or what you can do for your employees, but we do know that if you can honestly answer it and implement the answer for real, managing your people would be unnecessary.
#9. Create a co-operative culture
If you are in top management, you can help create an incredible culture for your employees. Yes, there will be few employees who will only think about themselves. But create an environment where everyone feels compelled to help each other even though they are selfish by nature. It can be something like conducting a “helping seminar” where you need to help someone with what you love to have for yourself. Generate new ideas like this. Use your ingenuity and you would see that more co-operative the environment is, better are the relationships among employees and better would be the results of the organization. Think about a troupe of army. They have a common goal to achieve. If they help each other in getting closer to the goal, achieving the goal would become much easier. Implement the similar type of organization culture.
#10. Find key people
You will see even though all the employees are in the same position, there are few who do more than you ask them to. They are motivated by themselves. They want to go ahead and do something magnificent. They are the change makers and cornerstones of the organization. Talk to them on regular basis. Especially then when there’s a crisis and the organization needs to go through a transition. They will help you make that change easy. They will help you reduce the resistance among people and they will be standing by you by helping other people who aren’t ready for the change. And guess what, managing an entire team would become significantly easier.
#11. Deal with disagreement
It’s said that if only one thing can be removed from a relationship, every relationship will thrive. You’re right. We are talking about disagreement between two parties regarding an issue. While trying to manage people you are actually having a relationship with your team members. Yes, a professional relationship of course. But as a rule of relationship, there would be disagreement regarding something. For example, you want your team to work on something right now as there’s an urgency and you need to deliver the work by today and your team is not agreeing to complete today and calling it unrealistic. Instead of scolding or screaming, you can dig deep and try to understand.
Talk to them about what they feel is realistic and why they feel that the work they have been given is unrealistic! And then you can talk to the client and increase the deadline. Here’s the deal. You always need to put your employees first, even before your clients. Why? Here’s the answer. You will not thrive among strangers if you don’t have the shoulders of your family members. Your employees are your family members and you need to care about them first.
#12. Understand their fears to manage well
Fear is one thing that stops your employees from taking action. Even procrastination is one sort of fear. To understand their fears, you need to go deep into their heart and dig. Simply talk to them every week and get to know them better. More you will talk to them, involve them in the process of brainstorming or let them contribute to any of the issues company is facing, more they will open up to you and begin to trust you. Without trusting you, employees won’t share their fears with you. Once you understand their fears, help them eradicate it by books, training, arranging internal learning programs and by counselling them. Managing people is like building a home. It won’t be always easy. But it’s simple.
#13. Send thank you notes
It is old school, you may say. But it works always. Just write a thank you and mention a particular reason why you’re saying thank you and send across to each employee. It will make them feel better about themselves and managing them will be easier.
#14. Build leaders
Don’t just think about managing them. Build them in such a way that they can manage the future employees. Train them, teach them and recommend them books, blogs, materials, online courses, certifications and programs. Act as a mentor so that they get that you’re really concerned about them and they will respond. And guess what, you will thus manage them better.
Above tips are simple and they don’t have any complexity among them. They are simple and they are easy to do and easy not to do. As a manager, you need to think how you would implement these tips to manage better. Only thing what we want you to understand that there’s no quick fix to manage people. You need to truly care for them and for their growth. And that’s it. You’re done.
Pick some ideas from above and try to implement them. See whether they work in your situation or not. If they work and you are able to manage your people well, keep on repeating them; if they don’t, pick another and try again. Managing people is not rocket science. It is care given to one human being to another.