The World’s Shortest Lesson on Being a Great Manager

Being a manager is a tough, tough job and there are many things a manager needs to be able to do. But, if you want to put yourself above 90% of the managers out there, focus on developing your skills in four key areas:

  1. Selecting people who are a great match for the job and the company. You are responsible for their results and if all goes well they will be with the company for years to come. Plan your effort accordingly.
  2. Giving your people a clear vision for their role and clear understanding of your performance expectations.
  3. Investing time, energy, and resources into developing your people so that they can perform at the level expected. This includes coaching, training, advising, and giving feedback.
  4. Holding your people accountable for delivering results.

Enough said.


  1. Yet, the possibly two most important sub-lessons, based on the managers I have experienced so far, are missing:

    o Learn humility.

    o Trust the people you have chosen to actually do their job (if not, why did you chose them?) and do not directly or indirectly sabotage them.


    1. I’m fully with you there. I’ve found that a manager’s lack of trust is exacerbated when they fail to do points 1-4 well. And a lack of humility prevents them from: 1) seeing the patterns that they are creating; and 2) seeking to improve their leadership skills (and leadership is very much a skill, not a title or position).


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