Wednesday, February 10, 2016

How an Investment in Front-Line Leaders Pays Off

one duck walks on the curb while 5 other ducklings on the street below

This is a perfect picture of a newly promoted manager. Once part of the team, the duck still looks just like the others but has suddenly been given higher status. Will the new leader jump back down and blend in or will new ways of behaving inspire and lead the team forward from a different vantage point as they grow?

Do not expect new managers to learn how to lead others well on their own. They need help. Situational Leadership Training for example, can provide some great foundational management skills to help new managers transition from an individual contributor to a role where success is measured by the success of their team. Managers are the ones who have a major impact on employee engagement; they are the ones who translate senior leaders’ strategies to the teams who must implement them.  The better they are at leading, the more likely employees will perform at their peak, the less likely employees are to quit, and the greater chances of important corporate-wide initiatives being effectively implemented.

Here is why your investment in front-line managers will pay off. They learn how to:

Delegate effectively
Effective front-line managers know the strengths and drivers of their team members, match them to job roles, inspire ownership of the work to be done, and get the best from their people.

Drive better results
With targeted training, smart front-line managers are better at thinking strategically. By thinking through to the goal and planning how to reach it, they are able to articulate a clear and compelling vision that inspires their people to commit to doing high quality work that matters most.

Set a standard for behavior
The best front-line managers set a high performance standard for both results and behavior.  They know how to coach their followers to ever higher levels of performance to get more than the sum of the parts of their team.

Be and hold others accountable
Knowing how to take responsibility for their own behavior and the results of others, well-trained front-line managers can build a culture of trust. This, along with clear and transparent success metrics and aligned roles, creates the foundation for high performing teams.

Do not leave the training and development of your front-line managers up to chance. The risk to the organization as a whole is too great in terms of turnover risk, employee disengagement and missed targets. The investment you make in developing your new managers will pay off many times over in productivity, and in motivated, engaged employees.

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