I hear many managers in organisations admitting they are filled with self-doubt, leading to exhaustion, fatigue, helplessness, and stuckness. This is not how it’s meant to be. You have been chosen as a manager because you have talent. Believe in yourself.
Jean Fenwick works with high-performance individuals and in her interview for Mental Health Chats YouTube and Podcast Jean mentioned that 74% of UK adults felt stressed out to a point that they couldn’t cope in the last year.
High performers are the greatest assets to organisations, but we need to be careful because they can also be the biggest loss if they are pushed too far.
High performers are natural leaders, so can often fall into management quickly because they are good at their jobs. They are very goal-focused, make a consistent effort, and have a very strong skill set. All characteristics of people who are natural managers.
What can we do to help high performers who are managers make sure they do not push themselves too much, meaning they feel more in control while leading their teams?
Here are 5 ways managers can feel more in control:
1. Build the right team. With the right team around you, who you work well with, you will feel more control. When talking to managers about their hiring process, I make sure they understand the consequences of hiring the wrong people. So often, managers are pressured to make decisions quickly, filling positions immediately. You are better off waiting for the right person, than hiring the wrong person, as you will then waste your time training them up, then have to ask them to leave. This is not only a waste of time, but also a waste of money.
2. Articulate your authority. Remember, you are the manager. We do not want to be known as an authoritarian, but we do want to be recognised as the manager. Think about how you can present authority with a win-win outcome. It is important to show you are in control, but not come across as behaving aggressively.
3. Identify problems. Recognise problems when they occur and address them, always look for a solution. Grant and O’Connor, psychologists from Sydney University found that if we addressed the solution instead of the problem, we are more motivated and productive. As a manager, control is demonstrated when we aim for solutions.
4. Don’t be overbearing. You are a team. Yes, you are there to manage the team, but you are not there to be seen as overpowering, arrogant, and dominant. If you act in these three ways, you will not gain respect, you will sacrifice control.
5. Encourage communication. Were you aware that questioning helps you gain control? So many people think that if they do not talk, they will not have control. It’s quite the opposite. Questioning opens up communication, leading to control.
What have you done, as a manager to get more control with your team? I would love to hear your stories.