New managers need to establish credibility with the people they manage. Without it, they lack the trust and respect they need to earn from their team. So, what key behaviours must managers exhibit to be accepted as the credible leader of their team? This video ‘Establishing Credibility’ sums it up in a nutshell (or 2 minutes, 20 seconds to be precise!)
When moving into a management role for the first time, new managers can find it difficult to tread the path between ‘being one of the gang’ and ‘being in charge’. Even experienced managers who are brought in to manage a pre-existing team can find it difficult to know how to establish their credibility from the outset. The video explores four key behaviours all managers need to exhibit.
Being able to see things from your people’s point of view is a good starting point.
Empathy is not the same as friendliness
Displaying empathy means taking care to understand how things look from where your team members sit. It doesn’t mean being all pally and jokey and it isn’t the same as friendliness. Being friends can help but to understand another person’s feelings or thoughts about a particular issue you need to empathise with them, even if you don’t agree with them. You must always balance friendliness with your need to treat everyone in the team the same and your conduct must reinforce your team’s overall objectives. By showing empathy, members of your team will understand that even if you need to take them to task sometimes, you do understand their perspective. They are much more likely to take your views and instructions to heart too. If you stand in their shoes, they are much more likely to stand in yours.
People need to know that you mean what you say
So often managers underestimate, or don’t even consider, the impact their actions (or lack of them) have on their people. Being able to rely completely on what your manager says is crucial for credibility. The manager who says they will do something but never gets around to it, very quickly gets a negative reputation. And whilst there may be no malice intended and the undertaking has simply been overlooked and then forgotten, the resulting bad feeling is damaging and long-lasting. The way to avoid this is to only promise to do what you know you can deliver and to always do what you’ve said you’re going to do. No-one likes to be let down. The manager who can be relied upon to do what he or she says is a successful manager because their people deliver for them too. Like empathy, reliability is a two-way street.
Integrity includes honesty but is more than that
Being true to your own values and those of your organisation means consistently displaying integrity - in everything you do and everything you say. Your behaviour is your flag-bearer of who you are. Being honest and open, showing that you uphold your own beliefs and respect other people’s, is at the heart of establishing credibility with your team. And once your people get to know you, they will be able to anticipate your reaction to ethical issues and will follow your lead. A manager who shows integrity gains people’s respect.
Without clarity people drift
Credibility as a manager also depends on being clear about what you want your people to do. One of the principal roles of any manager is to be clear about what needs to be achieved. The manager may set parameters by which objectives need to be achieved, empowering team members to decide how they will achieve them, or the manager may give instructions on what needs to be done. But whatever the extent of autonomy for team members, their goals need to be clear. If people don’t know what is expected of them they will do whatever they think needs doing. And that might not be in the team’s overall interests or what your organisation requires. The manager’s job is to ensure that the team knows what’s required and that everyone knows exactly how they contribute to these objectives. Clarity matters and it’s the manager’s job to provide it.
Establishing Credibility illustrates the four key behaviours of empathy, reliability, integrity and clarity in under two and a half minutes. Take a look for yourself to see how it can help your managers make a great start to managing a team.
View the video here now.
About WATCH & GO videos
WATCH & GO® videos show people how to perform better at work by illustrating practical phrases and key behaviours in just three or four minutes. There are around 60 titles, each dealing with a different management topic or ‘tricky’ situation. Learners simply ‘watch’ and ‘go’ to manage everyday situations at work.
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