A manager has one of the toughest jobs in the planet, the job of managing people. People come in different sizes, shapes and colors. They also come in different characters, tempers and personas so even though the manager might be earning more, they also deal with a lot more issues. One of the kinds of people that must be managed are those who are hard to manage. They give you a headache that turns to a migraine but still that is why they need management.
So how do you manage this challenging subset of the broader employee population? Personalities being variable, individuals need to be managed individually, but there’s still general guidance that can be provided. In that spirit, here are six tips for managing people who are hard to manage.
Accept that management is an inherently complex and difficult job – Don’t fight it. Don’t waste time and valuable mental energy wishing it weren’t so. Recognize that frustrations and difficult situations go with the territory of management. That’s why you’re being compensated more than if you weren’t in management. Approach delicate employee “issues” positively, like an intriguing puzzle to solve.
Don’t avoid or bulldoze conflict, but deal with it directly and evenhandedly – Conflict is the currency of management. If you abhor conflict, management likely isn’t the right job for you. The best managers aren’t “conflict avoiders,” but neither do they pull rank and roll right over others when conflicts occurs. Remember, you’re going to have to continue work with these same people in the future. Best to look for fair constructive resolutions, not simply “getting your way.”
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A good manager will hire someone so long as they are qualified even if the person is more qualified than them. The question is how do you manage someone who is already smarter than you? Well for starters you can consult your fellow managers and then also try to get more information.
Consider reaching out to other managers who may have experienced similar challenges. “Talking to peers, coaches, and mentors about your feelings and fears of inadequacy” will help you feel less alone and may also give you ideas on how to handle the situation, says Wallace. A candid conversation with your manager might also be worthwhile, according to Schwarz. “Share your concerns and ask what led him or her to select you for the role and what you bring to it,” he says. This isn’t “fishing for compliments,” he adds. “There’s nothing wrong with asking for reassurance,” and the answers “will give you insight into your strengths and the development needs of your reports.”
In yesterday’s organization, the boss was the teacher and the employees were there to learn and do as they were told. Today, “learning is a two-way street,” says Schwarz. Tell your direct reports that you want to learn from them and then be deliberate about “creating opportunities to make that happen,” he says. “You don’t need to become a technical expert, but you do need to know enough about the details to know where the problems lie,” adds Wallace. She suggests shadowing team members for a day or even for a couple of hours and “asking a lot of dumb questions.” Find out what worries them, where they get stuck, and from whom they could use input. “Get insight into what your people do,” she says. “It’s enormously motivating for employees.”
You do not have to feel like you are walking on egg shells. Do what you must but do remember that management is an art and it must be done well. Some managers share how they have been doing it successfully.
- Dr. Shieh’s Clinic & Associates
Entrepreneur: Thomas Shieh, MD, FACOG
Headquarters: Tamuning, Guam
Patients first, and take care of your staff. I found that if we put patients first, they will be always loyal to you and the care you provide them will be a bilateral relationship.
- Blake’s All Natural Foods
Entrepreneur: Chris Licata
Headquarters: Concord, N.H.
The best advice I have received and believe in is to hire great people, share your vision for the company, provide clear direction and expectations, then get out of the way so they can do their best work. Always be available to support each person on your team but encourage autonomy, creativity and risk-taking. Rehabilitate all micro managers……or replace them if you can’t save them……because they will kill all autonomy, creativity and risk-taking and force your best people to leave.
Sourced from: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/234199