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Making Managers Accountable for Employee Growth

2022-05-21 11:59:03

A Gallup report, ‘Why Great Managers Are So Rare’, shared that organizations fail to recruit the right talent for the role of managers 82% of the time. But what are the attributes that make managers “great”? An article in the Harvard Business Review answers this: they lead by example, allocate work evenly, maintain internal networks, and have one-on-ones with their employees, among other things. According to Professor Linda Hill, Harvard Business School, we have to coach “managers to develop the culture and capabilities that their team members need.”


Why do organizations need efficient managers?

Bad managers cost a lot of money to companies. Managers are responsible for the level of engagement that employees have with their work. They can drive higher profitability, better productivity, less absenteeism and quality teams. When companies increase the number of efficient managers in the organization, they can increase the rate of engaged employees, which can lead to higher profits. 


Qualities of managers

Researchers at Gartner surveyed more than 7000 employees to understand if managers are capable of providing coaching and develop employees. Their study lead them to discover four different manager profiles based on their abilities to coach. 

  • Teacher managers: those that personally direct development
  • Always-on managers: stay on top of employees’ development
  • Connector managers: give targeted feedback, skills, needs, and interests of their employees
  • Cheerleader managers: hands-off approach, give feedback and put employees in charge


Further the researchers shared deeper insights into the role of managers. They gathered that there is little correlation between the time that managers spend on coaching employees and their performance. More time spent doesn’t equate to better performance.


The always-on approach of managers does more harm than good and these employees perform the worse. The reason: they spend more time coaching and less time in assessing the skills and strengths of their employees. 


The connector managers, in fact, turned out to be winners. These managers ask the right questions, provide targeted feedback and help employees connect with other colleagues who can help.


So how can companies find good managers? Gallup shares some tips and cues:


  • Every large company would have around 10 employees in a team managed by one manager. It is most likely that at least one of those 10 people would have the skills required in a good manager. Hint: It could be one of the employees who have great potential for managerial role. The key thing to do is to find that person. 
  • Companies should find and promote employees from within the organization to become managers rather than hiring external resources.


And here’s how companies can hire managers that are potential assets for their organizations. An article in Chron shares insights: 


Employ sourcing to hire managers 

To source good talent means to seek out candidates in a crowd. This could be done in various ways such as attending career fairs or sourcing from networked groups.


Assess track record

The HR could put in extra efforts in assessing a candidate’s track record, ask for more professional references, run thorough background verification checks. If the manager is being hired from within the organization, a session of peer review throwing light on the candidate’s professional acumen could help HR make decisions.


HR’s ability of persuasion

Imagine that a company has found a highly talented candidate for the role of a manager but the candidate is not too sure about taking on the role. It would all boil down to the HR’s ability to persuade the candidate. A large part of every job role is the result of the ability to get things done, which, in other words is, persuasion


HR’s level of expertise

Combining persuasion with in-depth understanding of the job role and goal. Dr. Jay A. Conger, a research scientist, stresses on the importance of establishing credibility for persuasion. He explains that people are more likely to be persuaded by someone they trust. Credibility includes two factors: the level of expertise and the rapport between the candidate and the one who is recruiting. If the HR or recruiting managers make sure that they have enough knowledge and expertise in the subject and if they share a good rapport with the employee or candidate, it could become easier for them to persuade and get the right manager on board.


It is essential, for all organizations, to have HR teams and recruiting managers that are committed to improving the quality of management and managers. They can achieve it with the right mix of skills and abilities to hire managers and employing recruitment practices such as background verifications. Are you ready to scout for your next great manager?


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