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What do you think are the top skills/traits that a manager needs to have to bring out the best in their employees?

I am an engineer in a middle sized company. Usually, there is a great deal of misunderstanding and trust issues between the management and engineers. Do you think that this is common? What are the top skills/traits that a manager needs to have to bring out the best in their employees?

7 Replies

Davida Shensky
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Davida Shensky Entrepreneur
We help small to medium size companies put together a strategy for success and hold you accountable to follow through
They need to be good leaders, communicate effectively, and learn management skills. Communication is the biggest problem because we don't often adapt styles of communication---some people see the whole picture and like to control everything, while others are very verbal and outgoing and can do business anywhere, while others do everything by the book and are very rigid---theen finally you have others who question everything and need all the facts before they make a decision. the best way to communicate is to learn to adapt your communication to your companions style and communicate in a ay that there's agreement and understanding between all parties
Tom Cunniff
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Tom Cunniff Entrepreneur • Advisor
Founder at Cunniff Consulting, B2B Brand Consultancy
In my experience, what you describe is very common: managers and engineers genuinely do not speak the same language. Engineers who want to succeed need to learn to speak in terms management can understand and act on. This does NOT mean adding impressive-sounding management jargon on top of engineering jargon. Instead, use fewer, simpler words. Draw simple pictures ("the data comes out of here and goes to these three places"). Use analogies ("Imagine a bowl of M&Ms. This algorithm sorts them by size and color.") This is not about "dumbing it down", it's about speed and clarity. Remember that Einstein said, "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough."
Craig Rothenberg
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Founder, CEO, Rothenberg Communications LLC
Here are 4 to consider:
1) Listening -- really listening.
2) Accepting that good ideas can come from anywhere in the organization
3) Knowing when to be hands-on, when to nurture and when to let talent off-and-run. This can be somewhat different for each employee, and only the manager who takes the time to really understand everyone in her/his charge will know who needs what degree of oversight and hands-on support.
4) Put the professional aspirations of each team member at least on par with your own aspirations -- ideally ahead of them. When your employees see you demonstrate that type of commitment, you'll get the discretionary effort and total commitment you want/need from the entire team, and the overall output of the team will be markedly higher.
I hope these help.
Michael Lipson
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Michael Lipson Entrepreneur
Executive Coach & Strategic Consultant
It's more common than it needs to be - that's for sure. And it's an expensive problem too.

Top Skills:
  1. ID, Understand & Model Core Values og Business
  2. Understand that we're all in this together, are human, and we're all important and deserve respect.
  3. Self Awareness

From these 3 all sorts of skills come forth - communication, listening, reducing the amount of power/significance/ego each wants to experience, transparency, and much more. This may be there skills you're rally asking about...

A great tool to promote such skills and collaboration is "CORE"
  • Cooperation - we're a team and after the same thing
  • Ownership - I own what's mine you own what's yours. No matter what
  • Respect - we're all humans and deserve respect, and will act respectfully
  • Empathy - stand in the other's shoes to better understand where they're coming from.


Silvia Salomon
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Silvia Salomon Entrepreneur
Consultant, Trainer in Organizational Communication and Organizational Well-Being
Respect for people, technical competence, good soft skills like listening, effective communication and conflict management, team building and team leading (once you have built your team...that is not enough, you will have to LEAD it every day), say what you do and do what you say, namely consistency over time and with people (do not treat someone differently). Silvia 2016-10-10 17:16 GMT+02:00 Ravi Shah :
Andrew Bird
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Andrew Bird Entrepreneur
Dynamic leader with deep experience in SaaS organizations and cloud-based products/services.
I agree with all of the above responses. One more I might add is that a good leader/manager needs to also be a bit of a 'coach' to his/her direct reports. I wrote an article on LinkedIn about it and I'll share it below.

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/20141122012021-3986886-the-manager-as-a-coach?trk=prof-post

Toni Sicola
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Toni Sicola Advisor
Corporate Wellness Director - Consultant at Livzo LLC
I have found that you can't be a good manager unless you're able to listen to your people. If all you do is talk and share your ideas but never listen to the input, opinions, and NEEDS of those who work for you, you'll never get anywhere

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