Good managers and caring management are still real assets for a company even in this time of the Corona Virus pandemic and the rise of freelancing. Those who have the qualities necessary to direct the action of the teams and maintain their motivation are always sought after, even if each generation has a different style, due to the economic environment of the moment.
Management and its methods of actions are always an important part of a culture. We have seen recently that the values of a Nation deeply influence the styles acceptable to employees. There are thus different ways of ruling depending on whether one is in the United States, China, Japan, Europe, or Russia. By taking a little more height, there are Western, Asian, or African models of management.
In addition, in the past, the type of management adapted according to the sectors, as pointed out by numerous books which put in opposition a few years ago the banking and advertising universes by way of example. Nowadays, it can be said that the main principles can just as easily apply in a car factory or an innovative start-up of a few people.
It is the styles that change, the form more than the substance. Once these particularities have been integrated, modern management values can then be expressed and adapted to different countries and fields of activity.
One element is promoting the wind of change in management, and its full employment. This may concern a whole market, as is the case in the United States or Germany, but also certain tight trades, such as those related to artificial intelligence or cybersecurity.
In this type of environment, it is the employee who chooses his employer, sometimes even his salary and not the opposite. It, therefore, becomes important to attract the best skills. Reputation, brand image, values transmitted via social networks play an important role today, more than in the past.
Millennials are in the process of imposing new rules and are forcing managers to question themselves in the face of their entrenched requirements. When they are the managers, they obviously have a different vision from their elders as to how to manage people. You could say that employees followed the same approach as consumers.
They have stopped going to hypermarkets every Saturday to fill their shopping carts, to move towards more varied, less loyal consumption patterns, looking for new products (e.g. online gifts, shoes, etc.), proximity and healthy values.
The “new” employees also put forward different behaviors compared to the 80s and 90s: the decisions must be explained, understood, the manager must almost obtain the support of his teams to work, the simple notions of authority and hierarchy are no longer sufficient in many cases.
Similarly, the search for balance and fulfillment between private and professional life means that constant trade-offs are made between financial considerations related to work and family and personal considerations. Among other things, this means that salary is no longer the main motivation criterion. It is for some, not for others, and not forever.
A manager must learn to play the best possible with 3 cards: a goal, a team, material means. How he uses these three elements will determine the content of his results, good or bad. The patterns have changed.
Many specialists no longer systematically place it at the top of a pyramid, it is more often today located in the center of a circle. It is not closed, leaving freedom of movement inside and outside the circle. Some authors speak of the transition from a vertical system to a horizontal system. The organization must allow transparency.
If discretion or confidentiality can be required, secrecy is badly lived, while it is the basis of certain traditional managerial styles.
Whether it is the vision of the company or a quantified objective, the card must be clearly exposed to the table, presented, explained. Even better, the ideal is for the manager to have prepared this objective in advance with the employees, via a preliminary debate or discussion, thereby de facto facilitating future membership.
Indeed, when, if the final decision or approval of the goal rests with the business manager or with the management body, it is smart to consult the team. They often have ingenious proposals to make, and this liberated expression, proof of recognition, also helps to limit the frustrations of some, who are tempted to leave the company.
It is obvious in this card that the heart of management resides. With the qualified generations of Y or Z, graduates, it is more and more often the interest of the function which takes precedence over the other criteria, including that of the remuneration.
Managers and other bosses must prove that they are in their place by their behavior and skills; a shock for many leaders, not always ready to accept this questioning. The good side is that these new employees understand that the same goes for them.
The resources allocated are limited, often limited, and the manager must integrate a new constraint: that of the environment. Indeed, the art of mastering the financial aspect remains an intangible element of the qualities expected from a manager, but it becomes essential to consider the scarcity of certain resources. The time for abundance is over, frugality is in order, making the task of the leader even more complex ... and interesting.
A few years back, it seemed that the idea of transitional management is one of the flagship phenomena in terms of recruitment. Initially, these transition managers were mainly hired to overcome a crisis, social plan, sudden departure of an executive, etc. Today, transitional management also exists internally.
Some companies, working in working groups for the execution of different missions carried out in parallel, decide to appoint temporary managers. These new project managers, therefore, have managerial responsibilities for a defined period. It is only about knowing how to highlight the talents best suited to the task at hand.
This is often very well received by experts who appreciate that their talent is recognized during a mission, but who are not interested in a permanent function of manager, because of the stress that this induces for them, or of workload in relation to their private lives. The degree of autonomy granted must, therefore, be studied before any decision is made concerning an individual.
Changes take time, so do not rush any event, but prepare them by starting to work with the leader and executive themselves before going any further. The famous Socratic "Know Yourself" has never been mentioned as much in the context of the company.
Today, the job choices made by young graduates of business schools, for example, are not always perfectly correlated with the skills they have learned and developed. The reason? Young people most often want to be sure to flourish in what they do, even if it means not always doing what is expected of them.
It also means that managers must perfectly master the art of delegation, while many admit that they do not know, be able or want to delegate.
Management, therefore, wants to be released, delivered as the song says. Also, benevolent, agile, responsible... Not too much is needed anyway!
Be careful not to lose your managers during the transformation phase. Everything depends on a clear idea of the organization we are targeting, the timing and clear explanations of the process and expected results. Without forgetting the basics of salaries and career development. Clearly…
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