Tasks on Management Skills
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Identify and evaluate the importance of the personal and professional skills, outlined above, for a successful manager, which enable the manager to meet organizational and own goals (1.1a)
The changing role of management:
Mary Parker " the mother of modern management" ,defined management as " the art of getting things done through people ". At one time, that meant that managers were called bosses, and their job was to tell people what to do and watch over them to be sure they did it . bosses tended to reprimand those who didn't do things correctly and generally acted stern and "bossy". Many managers still behave that way. Perhaps you have witnessed such managers yelling at employees at fast-food restaurants or shop floors.
Today management is changing from that kind of behavior. Managers are being educated to guide, train, support, motivate, and coach employees rather than to boss them around. Modern managers in progressive companies emphasize teamwork and cooperation rather than discipline and order giving. Managers in some high-tech and progressive firms of all kinds dress more casually, are more friendly, and generally treat employees as partners rather than unruly workers.
In general, therefore, management is experiencing a revolution. Managers in the future are much more likely to be working in teams, this'll appraise them below them as well as those above, and they'll be assuming completely new roles in the firm.
The following table summarizes the manager's different roles.
Setting organizational goals
Developing strategies to reach those goals .
Determining resources needed.
Leading, guiding, and motivating employees to work effectively to accomplish organizational goals and objectives.
Providing feedback on performance.
Allocating resources, assigning tasks, and establishing procedures for accomplishing goals.
Preparing a structure (organization chart) showing lines of authority and responsibility.
Recruiting, selecting, training, and developing employees..
Placing employees where they'll be most effective.
Measuring results against corporate objectives.
Monitoring performance relative to standards.
Taking corrective action.
Some modern managers perform all of these tasks with the full cooperation and participation of workers. Empowering employees means allowing them to participate more fully in decision making.
Tasks and skills at different levels of management:
Anyone who has ever played a sport such as basketball, football, or soccer knows there's a tremendous difference between being an excellent player and excellent coach (manager). Often a good player will volunteer to coach the neighborhood team and be disaster as a manager. The same thing happens in business. Few people are trained to be managers. Rather, the process of becoming a manger is similar to the sports example. A person learns how to be a skilled accountant or salesperson or production line worker, and then- because of his or her skill- is selected to be a manger. The tendency is for such managers to become deeply involved in showing others how to do things, helping them, supervising them, and generally being very active in the operating task.
The further up the managerial ladder a person moves, the less such skills are required. Instead, the need is for people who are visionaries, good planners, organizers, coordinators, communicators, morale builders, and motivators.
Managers must have three skills:
Technical skills: involve the ability to perform tasks of a specific department such as selling (marketing) or bookkeeping.
Human relation skills: include leadership, motivation, coaching, communication, morale building, training and development, help and supportiveness, and delegating.
Conceptual skills: refer to manger's ability to picture the organization as a whole and the relationship of various parts to perform tasks such as planning, organizing, controlling, system development, problem analysis, decision making, coordinating, and delegating.
The first line managers need to be skilled in all three areas. Most of their time is spent on technical and human relation tasks (assisting operating personnel, giving direction, and so forth).
First line managers spend little time on conceptual tasks. Top managers, on the other hand need to use few technical skills. Instead, almost all of their time is devoted to human relations and conceptual tasks. One who's competent at one level of management may not be competent at higher levels and vise versa. The skills needed are different at different levels.
The most difficult task for most managers to learn is delegating. What's delegating? Delegating is assigning authority and accountability to others while retaining the responsibility for results. Managers are usually selected from those who are skilled at doing what the people they manage are doing.
As we noted earlier; most progressive managers of the 21 st century will be team leaders. They will set specific goals in corporation with a team of workers, set up feedback and communication procedures (control procedure) , and minimize the tendency to continually look over the team's shoulder to make sure it's doing things the manager's way . Employees will be given freedom (empowered) to decide the hows and whens of completion of specific tasks as long as the goals are accomplished on time.
Decision-making is choosing among two or more alternatives. It sounds easier than it is in practice. In fact , decision making is the heart of all the
We have six Ds of decision making, which are:
Define the problem
Describe and collect needed information
Decide which ethical alternative is best
Do what's indicated ( implement solution))
Determine whether the decision was a good one and follow up.
Managers often have computer terminals at their desks so they can get internal records and external data of all kinds. But again no data in the world can replace a manager who is creative and make brilliant decisions. Decision-making is more art than a science. It's the one skill most needed by managers and leaders in that all the other functions depend on it.
Provide a range of practical methods suitable for developing or improving the skills discussed in 1.1b
Learning managerial skills:
We have explored the broad categories of skills needed by various levels of management. Now let's be know more about specific skills needed to be a good manager.
a) Verbal skills:
The bulk of a manager's duty will involve communicating with others. a communicate his idea to others. To prepare for such tasks, he should take oral communication courses.
At least half of communication is skilled listening. A good manager mixes with other managers, workers, clients, stockholders, and others outside the firm . he or she listens to recommendations and complaints and acts on them. Active listening requires the asking of questions and feeding back what you've heard to let others know he is truly interested in what they say.
b) Writing skills:
Managers must also be able to write clearly and precisely. Much of what he want others to do must be communicated through memos, report, policies, and letters. Organizations every where is complaining about many graduates in ability to write clearly (which will affect our future managers). So if from now on, a future manager, develop good writing skills, he will be miles ahead of his competition. That means he must practice writing, it helps to write anything like, diary, letters, notes and so on. With practice he will develop the ability to write easily- just like he speaks. Also with this shill he will be more ready for his career in management.
c) Computer skills:
The office of the future will be an office full of computers and related technology. Memos, charts, letters, and most of other communication efforts will involve the computer. When a manger is practicing writing, practice on a word processor. The truly efficient manager of the future will be able to effectively use and take advantage of the continuing developments in technology.
d) Human relations skills:
A manger works with people and that means that good managers know how to get along with people, motivate them, and inspire them. People skills are learned by working with people. good leaders begin early by assuming leadership positions is sports, community groups, and so on.
A manager must be aware of how others react with him. If he cause negative feelings or reactions, he has to learn why? He doesn't be afraid to make mistakes and upset others. That is how he could learn. But also he has to learn how to work with others .
What is managing diversity?
Is building systems and a culture that unite different people in common pursuit without undermining their diversity.
Research has shown that heterogeneous (mixed) groups are more productive than homogenous (similar) groups in the work place .men and women, young and old, and all other mixes of people can learn not only to work together but also to work together with more success. In the future, mangers must learn how to deal effectively with people from different cultures. Managers will also be asked to work in foreign countries. The more skilled he can become in other languages and in working with diverse cultural groups, he will be an effective manager.\
e) Time management skills:
One of the most important skills for new mangers to learn how to budget their time effectively. There are many demands on managers' time that they need to learn to control telephone interruption, visits from colleagues, questions from subordinates, meetings scheduled by higher management, and such. . This could be by setting priorities, delegating work, choosing activities that produce the mot results and dealing with interruption.
f) Technical skills:
To rise through the ranks of accounting, marketing, finance, production or, any other functional area , the manager should be proficient in that area. About 60 percent of top mangers have taken courses beyond their bachelor's degree. The most common areas of technical expertise among top managers are accounting and finance together. Marketing came in second. Slightly more than half of the top 1000 chief executive officers in the country has a graduate degree.
As an example of the skills needed by managers to carry out their work successfully, I'll apply it on my organization and how they are trying to develop these skills from now .They believe that we are the future managers and professors, so we have to learn and apply these skills from now on .
I work as a teacher assistant in MIU ( Misr International University). We use to have to attend workshops to improve and develop our ( assistants) skills. These work shops were mainly discussing the following topics :
Look at these , these are skills needed from us to have as future professors in MIU.We have to learn how to control a class, how to deal with trouble makers, how to finish what we plan for in the time required..etc.
They kept telling us that we are the managers of the class . They resembled the class as an entire organization and I'm the leader, manager, controller and evaluator . also they train us to parctice talking in English all the time , to be able to handle all the class teaching in English. Also we have to have excellent computer skills. All of these skills is better off to be learned from now , to apply it in our future careers.
This is a simple article from the internet disscussing what should managers do to develop their career.
What is expected of me? How well am I doing?
Sales Manager: "You need to learn how to do relationship selling."
Sales Associate's response: "What exactly does that mean?"
Executive to manager: "You need to be more of a leader and less of a traditional manager."
Manager's response: "What exactly does that mean?"
The world of work is changing so fast, it's difficult to communicate changing expectations quickly and clearly. This is especially true in areas such as sales skills, project management skills and leadership skills. The changes expected in these areas aren't easy to observe and measure and, up to now, most companies didn't attempt it. But with competition heating up and hierarchies melting down, the focus on performance and career development has become more intense. For this reason, "competencies" have become a new tool in the workplace.
Competencies are clearly spelled out expectations for a certain role (a leader) or a job (sales associate). They go far beyond a job description to create a template for "ideal" performance. This tool can then be used for things such as hiring, day-to-day coaching, training and development and performance reviews.
Once individuals know what the expected competencies are, the next question is, "How am I doing on them now?" Many organizations put the competencies into a format that can be used as a feedback instrument. Then they use it to gather "360 degree feedback". This refers to getting feedback from people all around you; your boss, your peers and your employees.
Gathering feedback from other colleagues has many advantages. In addition to his or her manager's feedback, it also reveals what peers and employees think. It is more comprehensive and less prone to individual bias, since there are multiple perspectives. For example, a manager, who may have thought that his boss was just being picky about his communication skills, will begin to take it seriously when everyone around him is also suggesting that he needs improvement in that area.
But there are pitfalls to avoid when setting up competencies and a feedback system like this. If it isn't done well, the damage control will overshadow any good that may have come from it. Here are some things to consider:
· Create a participatory process, where representatives help to establish the competencies and how they will be used. If this process is done "to them," rather than by giving them some control, there will be more resistance during implementation.
· Make the competencies as specific to the job as possible. The more generic they are the less effective they will be. In addition, it is key to word the competencies in behavioral language, so everyone knows what the competency means. For example, instead of "Effective sales skills," include some behaviors, such as, "Builds trust through accountability, honesty and follow-though," or "Looks for additional ways to help clients solve their business problem before, during and after the sale," or "Makes realistic commitments for themselves and the team, and does what it takes to keep those commitments."
· Use the feedback for coaching and development rather than a for a performance review or to weed out ineffective managers. Although it can eventually be folded into the performance review process, it creates less defensiveness if people have a chance to work on their skill gaps before they are evaluated on them. It isn't fair to surprise employees with a performance review on expectations they haven't seen before.
· No matter how open the culture is, people are reluctant to be honest unless they can give feedback anonymously. Later, if managers are genuinely willing to discuss their feedback openly, individuals will come forward with their personal feedback and advice. Initially, each manager should collect data from a minimum of three or more peers and three or more employees so that confidentiality is preserved.
· Time and trouble can be avoided by using an experienced third party to guide the group and to independently gather and tabulate the feedback for each manager. When we help organizations with this process, we find that people are more willing to be honest when they know that a neutral party is doing the tabulation and individual feedback reports.
· Give the data and any summary report back to the manager, not to their boss. Hold managers accountable for creating an action plan that they will co-develop with their manager. The plan should include how they plan to leverage their top strengths and how they plan to improve their weaker areas. The plan should also include how the boss can help with that development.
· An overall report on the organization's strengths and development needs can be used to determine what the training priorities are, what should be included in a core curriculum and where training dollars should be spent.
· An independent third party can provide help to a manager who is struggling with his/her feedback and what to do about it. If they are unfavorably surprised by what their peers or employees think, they will probably appreciate guidance in how to approach their colleagues for more clarity.
· Managers should meet with their manager at least once a year to go over their action plan and discuss progress. The best career development happens on the job, so it's important that manager play an active role by coaching their employee, giving them new and challenging assignments that will play to their strengths and develop weaker areas.
Companies are realizing that more sophisticated performance management has a bottom -line pay off and individuals are demanding more coaching and development on the job. Systems like these can be a win/win for everyone.
Personal Skills Audit
Provide evidence of the various personal skills audits carried out as an aid to understanding where you stand with regards to achieving the objective of becoming a more effective manager. These to include the obligatory analyses of the personal learning style and skills audit. Choose from the strengths and weaknesses these reveal, samples that will affect the development of the 4 skills from outcome 1 (1.2a).
SKILLS AND TECHNIQUES FOR EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT
Good 'Time Management' is an essential quality for anyone who needs to work efficiently and effectively in an everyday working environment. It is essential if you are to achieve the organizations objectives and indeed the individual's personal objectives. There are many techniques which, when combined, give an individual (or team) the skills required to 'time manage' the task effectively. In a nutshell, time management is all about making the most efficient and effective use of your time.
Some examples of these skills and techniques are as follows:
a. Planning and Organization
d. Review and Monitoring
PLANNING AND ORGANISATION
Information/Anticipation: Successful planning requires accurate information from which decisions are eventually made. This accurate information is crucial if these decisions are to be' well judged' and implemented successfully. An element of anticipation is also a bonus if you are able to 'best guess' a possible arising which may influence your decision.
Flexibility: The planning must also be flexible as not all plans are 'set in concrete' Circumstances change and the overall plan must remain flexible and capable of change as the situation determines. Sufficient time spent planning can greatly reduce the overall time taken to complete an activity and should always consider 'all factors' which may have an influence on the task's final outcome. By giving the objective the correct amount of time in the planning phase, and by 'factoring in' any events which could (if not considered) destroy or devalue the overall outcome of the task.
Goal Setting: By ensuring clear goals are set from the outset, and by keeping a constant review of the tasks progress, a successful outcome should ensue when coupled with other skills and techniques in successful time management. Planning should be considered not just in the short term for each single objective but also include daily, weekly and long term planning.
As suggested, planning alone will not necessarily ensure successful objectives are met. Allocated time must also be prioritized in a manner that focuses on the goals set during the planning phase. Many people often spend their day in a frenzy of activity but because they are prioritizing their time correctly, they achieve a lot less output.
PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL SKILLS REQUIRED TO MANAGE EFFECTIVELY
ATTRIBUTES OF A MANAGER
To manage effectively, an individual requires many skills and various personal qualities to enable the successful completion of his, or her, objectives. The skills and qualities combine to shape the 'management style' of the individual and the style can directly affect the final outcome of the task completion. These attributes could be broken into four main headings as follows:
Social and Human skills
Within each of the above headings there are many sub groups which all combine to give the individual manager his unique style of management which can, or may not be, particularly effective.
Communication: Managing well requires sound communication skills above all else. No manager can relay their planning and intentions without this basic skill. It is vital that communication, by whatever means, relays the information to the staff and that more importantly, the information is understood and deliverable. Two way communication is essential, everyone will have some part to play in the exchange of information and the communication process.
Planning: Sound planning ensures the objectives are met and met within the framework of the organizations structure. Effective planning at the outset will ensure there is a realistic chance of completion in line with the goals set.
Knowledge and Information gathering: Planning without the necessary information will very often prove unsuccessful. It is vital that the information is gathered and the plan drawn up based on this information. Accurate information is essential if the plan is to prove a success.
Problem solving/decision making: As with any plan there are nearly always options and 'many ways to skin a cat' This will involve decision making and problem solving which the manager can make more effectively if the correct information is in place and the correct people in the team consulted.
Time prioritizing: Good time management is vital, without it the manager will become less and less effective as his or her time will be spent less and less productively. The 'art' of successful time management is one which all successful managers must master.
Training and Development: The workforce can only be as good as they training they receive and the same applies to management. Personal development and training aimed at improving managerial technique should always be encouraged.
Review and Monitor: As with all managed tasks, the monitoring and review of the progress and outcome is essential if lessons are to be learned and improved techniques are to be developed. The process on review should encourage an exchange of information of all those personnel involved and sound two-way communication is essential.
Goal Setting: The planning and information gathering stage will provide sufficient knowledge for a manager to set some targets and goals. If this information is accurate and the manager skilled in making judgment, a realistic goal can be set with achievable outcomes in the time given.
Interpersonal Skills: The ability of the manager to relate to his staff is vital. It is this communication and personal skill which will persuade the staff member to perform for his manager, that feeling of inclusion and a belonging which the manager relays to his staff member. The successful manager needs to be caring, companionate, and where possible remain calm under a crisis. Listening skills are also essential as are negotiating skills. A good team player normally combines most of these interpersonal skills and uses them to good effect in everyday management.
3. PERSONAL SKILLS AUDIT AND PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT PLAN
TABLE 1:- PERSONAL SKILLS AUDIT
Examples and evidence
Score 1 - 5
Communication and Literacy skills
Good use of written English gained from producing engineering assignments and written formal management reports during my seven years in the Aeronautical Research and Development. department at Bae Systems.
Oral presentation skills adequate and improving. Many chances to practice them in seminars and presentations. Prefer making individual presentations to group presentations as then I am more in control of the structure and flow etc. In future I intend practicing any presentation that I have to give in front of a small audience of friends a few times in order to check that it has good content, structure and timing.
I am also developing communication skills in a work context. Clear communication between myself and my sub contractors and boss is important. Also, am developing good interpersonal and communication skills in my contact with colleagues at work as well as in my dealings with customers.
Group & Interpersonal Skills - Working with others
I have plenty of experience of working as part of a team and being an effective member of a group. This began with sport at school and continued throughout my 27 years in the armed forces where teamwork is essential and vital in certain situations.
My current employment offers frequent opportunity to take part in group work as part of the weekly team planning and reporting meetings. I always try to make a positive contribution as my final decision on the outcome of the discussions will decide if the objectives are met, or not.
At work, I play the lead role in decision making but consult all my team members on a democratic basis.. This ensures all the team members have a valued input and builds a healthy 'team ethos'. I think that I am quite good at welcoming new employees and helping people to fit in and adjust to the pattern of work.
I want to improve my leadership skills further through courses targeted in this area and by continuing to plan and organize team events and expeditions.
Organization & Personal Skills - Independent Learning and Working
I am self-motivated as long as the task is interesting and holds my attention. The freedom to make decisions free from senior managers input helps greatly and means I can plan and schedule the work as I choose. Although I feel my Time Management is quite strong, I aim to improve my time management strategies regarding the meeting of programme deadlines for the customer.
I currently hold three levels of Sports coaching award and coach Tennis at several different locations. This requires commitment and dedication as the lessons are not always charged for.
I have had a number of jobs in the past two years and have been lucky in that I have had to take the responsibility and act on my own initiative in each of the roles.
Research & Problem Solving Skills
I try to view problems as challenges rather than major obstacles. I think that I am systematic and logical when it comes to thinking about problems and their solution.
I have developed these skills both as an individual and as part of working in groups where the group task which we are set is frequently of a problem-solving nature, have also gained a good grasp of the processes which one needs to go through to solve problems i.e. problem definition, generating alternative solutions, selection of most appropriate response and the eventual implementation of a carefully-considered solution.
I started developing computer skills when I entered into the Research and Development department 9 years ago. I have since carried out the European Computer Driving Licence and work regularly with all MS Office products. I also use MS Project for my planning and scheduling of works but am without formal training on this software. I would like to spend some time on a placement course to improve my skills on this product.
I am confident using e-mail and use it on a daily basis both to communicate with my clients, customers and sub-contractors. I also use email a great deal at home to keep in touch with my friends and family. I use the internet for research as well as online banking and booking holidays, reservations, flowers and shopping etc.
Application of Numerical Techniques
Good basic grounding in maths skills including graphs/charts - GCSE grade A and BTEC mechanical engineering.
I have good skills at mental arithmetic which is vital for fast track quotations for the customer during unforeseen work and additional items not scheduled.
PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT PLAN
Provide a personal development plan- see format supplied by Edexcel - showing how you intend to use the knowledge from outcomes 1 and 2 to further enhance or develop the skills you need to improve your managerial effectiveness. This to include a statement of objectives (SMART) and a SWOT analysis.(1.3a)
Another important technique of successful 'time management' is the ability to delegate work effectively. Delegation, used wisely, is an essential tool of the successful manager. It can free valuable time to enable the manager to target his or her time more effectively and thereby increasing the chances of a successful outcome. Delegation should be applied using the S.M.A.R.T. principles and not over ambitious. Where:
S â€¦.. Specific
M â€¦.. Measurable
A â€¦.. Achievable
R â€¦.. Realistic
T â€¦.. Time
The delegation should achieve the desired results through a clear, concise brief which should match the authority and responsibility of the individual and should be used consistently and through the management/staff chain as required. Another positive outcome of successful delegation include improved flexibility within the team, upskilling, increase in morale and motivation, reduced sick leave and a improved 'team environment' where team members feel more informed and inclusive.
Provide evidence of the monitoring and feedback undertaken where relevant and any adjustments made to the plan so that a more successful outcome could be achieved.(1.3b)
Having carried out an online 'Skills Audit' and identified my strong areas and the areas which need some development, I am in a position to identify training needs and areas which need improvement. See tables beneath for further details:
Skills that need some development
From this table it can be seen that to be truly successful in these areas, I may need to brush up on some skills and seek some advice on how to go about addressing just some of the following areas which have been highlighted as weak:
Identify business and my own personal responsibilities and liabilities under equality legislation
Review the diversity and needs of the business both with current and potential future customers
Ensure systems are in place to monitor and review current progress
Ensure technology is identified and utilized where necessary
Communicate my vision and my reasons for change where applicable
Skills in which I scored highly
From this table strengths include:
Planning the workforce
Adopting Health and Safety
Improving Business performance
The outcome of this PDP highlights my strengths and weaknesses from which I have drafted the 'Action Plan' beneath with realistic targets and goals to address the weak areas. This PDP would then be repeated every three to six months to review and monitor progress.
REVIEW AND MONITOR
As with all good management techniques, it is essential that the task is monitored and reviewed as the work progresses. This review should be ongoing and as before, accurate information is essential for a successful outcome to enable the review to be of value. The planning, delegation and prioritizing all should be subject to this review within successful 'time management'.
The benefits of successful time management (in addition to the successful task completion) include increased departmental efficiency, respect from staff by demonstrating successful leadership and managerial skills, reduced stress and absence from the workplace, these outcomes should in turn lead to improved morale throughout the workforce.
Draw conclusions outlining what you have learned from your analyses and how you might use this in the future. (1.3c)
ACTION PLAN - POST PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT PLAN OUTCOMES
Promote equality and diversity in my workplace
Trawl the local colleges, learning centers and distance learning organizations to find out more about promoting equality and diversity in my business.
Within 3 months
Promote the use of technology in my business
As above, source local college courses and/or distance learning to learn about the ways in which to introduce and enhance technology in my workplace for the good of the workforce and the business.
Within 3 months
Lead Change within my organization
Source leadership courses and information and endeavor to attend these events to benefit from their content
Within 6 months
Develop a strategic business plan
Find events and courses which develop the skills necessary to plan a strategy in the workplace.
Within 3 months
Put the business plan into action
From the knowledge learned from the above, implement the business plan and review and monitor at regular intervals
Within 6 months
Sources of information for my action plan as follows:
Local Business Link (Norfolk) PE37 7HT web www.businesslinknorfolk.co.uk
Acas â€¦â€¦â€¦. web www.acas.org.uk
Learndirect â€¦.web www.learndirect-advice.co.uk
Investors in people â€¦ web www.iipuk.co.uk
Internet in general.
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