Best Practices of Management
When the term “best practices” is used, you may only think of the work processes used in a business. What about the best practices of management? Although text book practices might be the norm at your organization, you may want to take into consideration the culture and act accordingly. That being said, there are still some generally accepted best practices in management to consider.
Clear goals and vision should be in line with each other. A team or department must be aware of where they are headed as well as what is expected of each team member to get there. If your objectives do not support your vision, maybe you should either change your objectives or adjust your vision.
The vision and goals should be clearly posted and reviewed with the team from time to time to keep the line of communication open. Feedback from your team is a great way to keep everyone involved and keep the accountability level high. A short 5-10 minute meeting each day would be a great way to keep everyone up to date on daily activities. Since this is probably not always feasible, be sure to make yourself available for informal discussions. At least touch base with each team member each day to see if there are any issues surfacing that needs to be addressed. Be sure to at least have a weekly meeting to ensure everyone is aware of what is going on.
Without a plan in place, it is hard to achieve any goal. You not only have to know where you are headed, you need to know how you plan on getting there. It is essential to have a plan and stick to it as much as possible. It is hard for a team to remain effective if the goal keeps changing or you keep hopping from one project to another without finishing what has been started.
It is hard to know where you are in the development and implementation of a plan without some sort of metrics. With the proper documentation, it is easy for a team to see where they started and just how far they have to go to finish a project. This can easily be a morale booster, as well.
Use your best resources to make your project a success. Engaging your team in the day-to-day work functions is a great way to identify needed changes and open the door to suggestions for improving processes.
One of the prime responsibilities of a manager is the ongoing development of his/her staff. The better trained your staff, the better prepared they are to handle the various situations that can occur day to day.
Feedback is essential. Focus can be placed on continuing to do those things that are done well so adjustments can be made where improvement is needed. Feedback should be immediate and provide specific examples to the person receiving it. Managers don’t always provide feedback to their team in a timely manner. It is very important to inform your team members of problems in either processes or behavior so action can be taken immediately. Otherwise the person involved may think they are doing everything up to standard and may not understand why all of a sudden they are wrong. Rewards should have the same timetable. Everyone appreciates and seeks rewards for their accomplishments. Although monetary rewards are certainly the most desired, not all rewards need to be monetary. Sometimes it is good just to hear that you are appreciated and that your efforts have been noticed.
There are many ways you can implement some best practices in management. Listen and learn. Since not any one person may have the key to success it is a good idea to listen to those around you. Reach out to other professionals who may have implemented successful management practices. You can learn from their experiences. Their stories of success and failure may be your key to success.