Management is defined as those responsible for all or a part of a company or organization. With a manager overseeing such a wide variety of tasks, it can be somewhat hard to characterize what their job actually entails.
So, what are the day to day activities of a manager? And what are the skills necessary to become a manager?
Day to Day Activities of a Manager
Setting Team Goals
Managers have typically worked for the company or in the industry for several years, making them a leader within the company. Since they have had a lot of experience working in the industry, they should be familiar with setting challenging yet attainable goals for their team. Managers use their experience and historical data on the company to set goals for their employees.
Analyzing Team Data
A manager is responsible for taking team data, creating spreadsheets and pivot tables from it, and analyzing it. A manager must keep track of employee output and data in order to see where employees can improve. They also use data to make sure their team is meeting and reaching their goals. Having quantifiable data helps a manager so that they can analyze this data in a variety of ways, whether it be for hours allocated to each client, conversion rates, or employee performance.
Guiding Team Meetings and Projects
A manager is typically known to spearhead meetings with their team. After setting goals and analyzing the data of their team, a manager holds weekly or monthly meetings to check in with their team. Managers use meetings to make company announcements, such as the promotion of an employee, the hiring of a new employee, or a new weekly or monthly goal to work towards. Managers also guide team projects to propel them to further success. Since managers typically have the most experience, having their insight and expertise leading a team can be great for the performance of the project.
Hiring New Employees
Managers are usually in charge of hiring for their department or organization. Since they are the ones from their department or company with the most experience or the best understanding of what it takes to be successful at the company, it’s only logical that they be the ones to bring on new employees. Managers are subsequently in charge of onboarding new employees and giving them the tools they need to succeed, and ultimately trying to have a good employee retention rate.
Leading Employee Reviews
Managers oversee reviewing their employees’ performance whether it be every three months, six months, or once per year. Managers, as well as employees, must prepare for these meetings by pulling months of data on the said employee to properly be able to evaluate them. They must pay close attention to quantitative data, but also to the qualitative skills their employees possess in order to be able to evaluate them properly.
Necessary Skills for Managers
An obvious skill that managers must possess is leadership. Leadership can be defined as motivating a group of individuals to achieve a common goal. Leadership can be learned over time by watching other leaders and deciding what you like about their process and what you don’t like about their process. Cultivating leadership skills is the most important skill a manager must-have. Many leaders have different leadership styles, and it’s important to develop your own if you’d like to one day have a management role.
Time Management Skills
Managers need to have the ability to float around to different tasks while still making time for and completing everything they need to do. Time management skills are hugely important when you oversee a team because you need to be able to devout time to each member if they need extra support as well as focus on your own tasks. Time management skills are something a manager must have in order to run a well-functioning team that can meet and exceed goals.
One of the most important skills a manager must possess is communication skills. A manager that is approachable listens to feedback, and can communicate objectives effectively to their team likely has a team that exceeds in their roles. A manager being approachable and making employees feel like they are able to openly communicate with them makes employees feel valued and heard. Additionally, managers should always be ready to give their employees advice for their professional development.
A manager is a person everyone in the team looks to for support. An essential skill a manager must possess is team-building skills. The key to retaining employees is having happy employees. Having a manager that cultivates an environment where their team feels supported, encouraged, and challenged is key to team building. Team building is necessary for a team to feel a sense of purpose and want to collaborate in their roles.
Managers are often highly motivated to learn new things, which is probably in part what landed them their management role. Being driven to self-learn is a crucial skill that managers must have in order to further the success of their team. No team gets better results by doing the same thing year after year. A manager is responsible for taking the time to go to industry events, webinars, and analyze current processes to see what things their team could be doing better on. This is hugely important in not only generating more revenue for the company but also in helping their team develop a wider range of abilities.
It’s important for managers to have delegation skills. Most of the time, managers are the most qualified of the team to work on a project. However, managers must use their time management skills to know when they are truly needed and when to delegate tasks to their team. Being able to delegate tasks evenly and to the team member most suitable for the work is an invaluable skill that managers should have to ensure the smooth operations of its team.
By definition, management is the person in charge of a team or organization, however as we have learned, it is much more than that. Managers must have a plethora of diverse skills that have been learned from many years of experience in an industry as well as be able to manage difficult issues that arise. In addition to this, managers must perform a variety of tasks each day to help make their team successful. These skills and duties are absolutely necessary for a manager to possess. So, if you hope to someday fulfill your dream of becoming a manager, let this list guide and help mold your professional development.