2011-04-15

Managers - get out from behind your desk!

Tim Connor

When was the last time you got out from behind your desk and wandered around your department or organization just to talk with the members of your department or organization? There is a term for this activity – MBWA, management by walking around.

 

Presence Among Your Employees is Important

The benefits of getting to know your people and letting them know you care about them will go a long way toward improving morale, communication, and employee performance. Time spent with them will have dramatic, indirect, positive rewards for you as a manager.

You don't have time? You have too much on your plate already? Excuses, excuses! If you are stuck every day in meetings, conferences, research, doing paperwork, or an otherwise busy schedule, it is guaranteed that "stuff" is falling through the cracks, and you won't even know it until you lose a key customer, vendor, or perhaps your best employee.

You can't manage your organization from behind your desk. You can only coach, train, inspect, lead, and direct when you are in the presence of your employees.

 Being visible to your employees allows you to:

  1. Catch people doing things right and recognize them.
  2. Catch people doing things wrong and modify behaviour through coaching.
  3. Keep in touch with the reality of your department or organization.
  4. Be available for questions, concerns, or needs of your employees.
  5. Find new creative ways to run your department.
  6. Be a sounding board for your employees.
  7. Send the message to your employees that you care and are interested in them and their jobs.
  8. Fix things before they break.
  9. Break things that need to be broken.
  10. Determine common perceptions that people have about the business, their jobs, customers, and so on.

 Effective Managers are In Tune with Their Organization

The most effective managers and leaders get to know their people. They know their frustrations, concerns, questions, beliefs, problems, dreams, goals, strengths, and weaknesses. You can't know any of this if you are barricaded behind piles of reports, non-stop meetings, and a heavy workload. The job of a manager is to manage it, not do it.

It is critical that managers be in tune with their organization’s culture, perceptions, employee attitudes and frustrations, and not wait for these to filter up through the ranks as rumours or hearsay.

Negative things are happening in your organization right now, and the sooner you identify them, the sooner you can reduce, eliminate, or neutralize them. If you just act as if everything is just fine, prepare for the consequences.


Reprinted with the permission of Tim Connor, bestselling author of over 80 books, including Soft Sell, the #1 sales book in the world for over 20 years. Tim has been a globally renowned sales and management speaker and trainer for 37 years. Contact him at tim@timconnor.com or 704-895-1239 (US) or visit www.TimConnor.com or www.CorporateDisconnect.com

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