When you first set up your company, you are in charge of running all functions of the company. From customer acquisitions, accounts and managing, you do it all as the owner of your new startup. However, as your business grows in size, you might have to come to terms with the concept of delegation: Distributing tasks pertaining to the functioning of the company to certain individuals that you give a certain level of authority to, expecting them to ensure the smooth functioning of their department.
Companies rely on managers to ensure that the smaller units of their organisation are functioning efficiently. In order to better understand what to look for while hiring a manager, we must first understand the various functions managers actually are responsible for carrying out.
What does a manager do?
Most people are aware that managers occupy somewhat of a leadership role within an organisation, given that the employees assigned under them are required to report to them, while they are required to ensure all the work gets done on time. However, the role of a manager far exceeds these responsibilities.
Managerial candidates, if hired as managers, will be in charge of four key facets: leading, organising, planning and controlling. One could sum up the role of managers under the following.
They are required to assess and help resolve issues, conflicts and limitations faced by employees in the workplace.
Managers are required to take charge of strategically allocating resources within an organisation. This means that managers must ensure the limited amount of resources allocated to their ‘unit’ are allocated and used in the most efficient way possible. For instance, the equipment can be allocated to various departments in different ratios based on the output that is expected from them.
Finally, they are required to keep records of employee and overall performance of the workspace, paying special attention to areas that could be improved and subsequently implementing these changes. Thus they don’t only ensure that employees are getting the work done, but they are also required to mentor them through their job, offering guidance and advice that might help employees carry out tasks assigned to them better.
Now that we have established what is asked of managers and the managerial skills they are required to have, we can have a look at characteristics organisations should look out for while interviewing managerial candidates.
Good communication skills
One of the most important managerial skills is to have good communication skills. While it is both essential and beneficial for managers to have a thorough understanding of and experience in the job their employees are carrying out, knowing what to do is only one piece of the puzzle. One must also be able to convey this information, knowledge and advice to employees. The most successful managers are those who are able to successfully convey the vision of the company alongside the path they are looking to follow vis-a-vis a project, ensuring everyone is on the same page.
Studies show that unsuccessful communication down the management change is one of the leading causes of inefficiency in company operations.
Confidence in decision making.
As mentioned above, managers are required to provide proactive feedback to employees and ensure they efficiently resolve any issues that arise. However, more often than not, the real world doesn’t pose a simple solution. There might be multiple avenues that may be actionable, however, it is on managers to be able to thoroughly analyse each option, and pick the best one. Therefore, while you are hiring a manager, one of the managerial skills you must look for is the ability to confidently make decisions and have the resilience to act upon their decision, ensuring they see it through for the entirety of its duration.
As mentioned above, managerial candidates must display the ability to take quick and efficient decisions. However, they must also take charge of their decisions, and accountability if it leads to unexpected or less than favourable outcomes. For instance, managers might decide to give employees an extra day off. While this might succeed in increasing efficiency as employees experience more resting time and less stress and result in the managers being praised for their actions, one must also be prepared for other outcomes.
As mentioned earlier, managers are required to be able to make difficult decisions and have the confidence to back them up. This serves a number of purposes. The first is that it increases the possibility of a task getting done / action being taken in time. The second is that instills a sense of confidence in the manager, in their employees. Managers who are able to project a sense of confidence in the workforce are more likely to increase efficiency and succeed in their role.
A manager that is confident is especially a good weapon to have in your arsenal when a company hits a fall, faces a setback or is going through a rocky patch. Managers who are able to keep their calm and appear collected and confident will be able to ensure employee morale does not deteriorate under less than optimum circumstances.
The ability to empathise
When one thinks of the term ‘leadership’, they often imagine a strong, commanding individual that has an obedient workforce dedicated in their entirety to the individual's cause. However, reality begs to differ.
An organisation is a collection of individuals that are working under one corporate entity. However, these employees, while working to attain the company’s goals, are in and of themselves individuals independent from the corporate entity that they work for; Individuals that are dealing with problems outside of the workspace as well. It is essential for a manager to be actively aware of this fact and ensure that they do not demand work from employees that eat into their personal lives. Showing empathy to employees and displaying a sense of understanding of their situation will make them feel like their job goes beyond a simple contract for pay, that they are cared about at their workplace.
A manager is an investment for both, your firm and your employee. If your managers are confident, communicative and empathetic, employees are more likely to respond in a positive fashion. This in turn will increase performance and efficiency. A good manager will benefit your employees and your firm.
Picking the right manager is a more essential feat than you would consider it to be. Hirect offers employers the ability to sort their requirements based on roles, and instantly browse talent in their required roles. Through Hirect, employers can interact with potential employees, such as managerial candidates, and ascertain whether they believe the talent is fit for the job and is a good fit for their company. You can learn more about Hirect and download the app right here.