People are human and they make mistakes, that’s human nature, after all. However, when you’re responsible for running a team, your management mistakes will undoubtedly reflect on your subordinates and, therefore, in the whole company.
It’s not uncommon to hear that the best learning opportunities come from mistakes but we’d like to politely disagree with that and help you.
For this reason, we’ve decided to compile this helpful list with the top 7 most common management mistakes to help you identify whether you our your manager are guilty of any of these sins.
Top 7 Management Mistakes
Failing to communicate
It’s not uncommon to hear about communication problems within companies.
In many companies, employees frequently claim they don’t know what’s going on most of the time. That’s not just due to lack of actual communication issues but because managers use control of information to ensure they remain valuable to the organization.
Knowledge is power and by making sure he/she withholds valuable information no one else has, managers ensure their value. This is the number one on our management mistakes list mostly due to the fact that it directly correlates with many of the other mistakes.
Failing to listen
Almost as important as talking to your team is listening to them. The more open you are to receive information, feedback and contributions from the members of your team, the more they’ll trust you.
It’s very, very important to give your focused, undivided attention when your employees bring you information or concerns. That’s the only way you’ll let them know what their input is valuable.
It’s also very important to always make time for your team. Being a manager you’ll likely get wrapped up with your own workload but never let that stop you from making yourself available to your team.
Your people must always come first – they look up to you for guidance, information and support and, if they feel they can never really count on you, they won’t trust you.
Failing to learn
Another one in the hall of common management mistakes happens when managers fail – or forget – to learn. If you’re currently in a managerial position, you’ve probably already learned a lot to achieve your level of success – that may even be the very reason you got to be a manager to begin with.
However, once they achieve a leadership position, some managers forget that you should never stop learning and start to apply the “my way or the highway” philosophy: the only way to get things done is theirs.
That’s not necessarily a tragedy, successful managers normally find the best ways to get things done but, when they institutionalize their own methods and don’t adapt to suggestions or environmental changes, that can be a tragedy.
Being able to listen to your team is essential, as is being able to learn from them and adapt when necessary.
Failing to delegate
Delegation is about trusting others with your authority and responsibility and that can be very scary. However, delegating comes with a variety of benefits. First of all, as a manager, you can’t be everywhere all the time.
Delegating lightens your burden and it’s also very beneficial to your employees. By giving them responsibilities you’re also creating opportunities for them to learn, develop specific abilities and, why not, leadership skills.
It’s ok to be scared of delegating, specially when our internal control-freak tells us no one but ourselves can do the job. But that’s also the reason for management nightmares such as process bottlenecks. If no one but yourself can do a specific task, you’ll likely become a bottleneck for your team’s productivity.
We’re not saying delegating is an easy thing, it takes a lot of effort to trust your team with important tasks but, unless you figure out a way to overcome that barrier, you’ll never have time to focus on the bigger picture and actually manage your team.
Failing to motivate
Can you safely say what motivates your team? What drives them to work and strive to be better every day? If your first guess is money, you should probably guess again.
Never – and I stress, NEVER – forget that a team is a group of people that together achieve joint success (or failure). Each member makes their contribution towards the end result and each of these people have unique views and motivations for waking up for work,
Failing to acknowledge that each of these unique people have their own perception of the most effective way to reward a job well done is a huge management mistake.
Many people make the mistake of assuming everyone thinks the same and everyone is just looking for monetary reward – sure, money is always a good thing but some people value praise a lot higher than a raise.
Listening to your people is essential for finding out what drives them so, never forget: always listen.
Leadership and management is, first and foremost, a people’s job. Being a leader, it’s your responsibility to steer each of your team members towards achieving their best results and making the best contribution they can to your team’s success.
Never forget: the more successful your team is, the more successful you are!