The Art Of People Management
Managing people well is a skill. However, for many managers, they don’t take the time to learn how to be a people leader. As a result, more than half of workers leave because they don’t like working for their boss.
Mastering the art of people management is increasingly important for organizations to remain competitive and achieve long-term success. To become excellent at people management, it takes having strong communications skills and a willingness to listen more than we speak.
Our CEO and Founder, Jessica Chen, recently hosted a Soulcast Media | LIVE event on LinkedIn. She interviewed Senior VP, Talent & Chief HR Officer at Harvard Business Publishing, Angela Cheng-Cimini. They shared tips and personal stories about the art of people management.
1. Leadership today
Leadership is about providing support, removing obstacles, and getting out of the way. There are several things you can do to elevate yourself as an admirable leader. Consider the following:
- Make Space – As leaders, we need to make space for our team members. This means acknowledging we do not know everything. We need to create the environment for our team to feel comfortable contributing their ideas in. If we think we have all the ideas, we will make our team feel like their ideas don’t matter as much.
- Show We Care – One-on-one meeting with our team is a great way to build trust, familiarity and rapport. For example, carving out time every month to check in is a great way to get to know others beyond just the work itself. It’s also how we can show a bit of ourselves to our team so they feel like they know who their manager is and what they care about.
As leaders, we need to remember our team comes first. It’s our job to create the environment and invest in getting to know others beyond just the work.
2. Tackling Burnout
Preventing burnout is critical for the success of our team, their projects, and the organization. As leaders, we can do several things to tackle burnout. Consider the following:
- Be Perceptive – Oftentimes people on our team won’t explicitly say they are feeling burned out; instead, they will show it. This is why we must pay attention to their body language, tone and energy in meetings. For example, if we notice a team member isn’t as engaged as they usually are doing a meeting, we can reach out and say, “We noticed you didn’t have your camera on during the meeting, and you weren’t as engaged. How are you doing?” Asking is a form of caring. When we’re perceptive, we can tackle burnout before it overwhelms our team.
- Making A Difference – One way to counter burnout is to have people feel like they’re making a difference. We can do this by asking our team members what they’ve done that they’re really proud of. For example, we can say, “Hi Jamie, tell me something you’re really proud about this week.” Giving people a moment to talk about what they feel good about immediately lights up their brains. We need to make people feel like their work is valued and essential. Making this a regular practice is a great way to boost morale.
3. Management Material
During the Soulcast Media | LIVE, Jessica asked Angela how someone can prepare themselves for a leadership role. Angela shared the following tips:
- Mentor – To improve our leadership skills, we must find a mentor. A mentor is a person who will give us feedback so we can improve ourselves. For example, if we see someone who is a great leader, we can ask them if they would be willing to mentor us. We can offer to meet for coffee or talk via email or zoom. A great mentor will help us hone our leadership skills. Find someone you like and reach out.
- Emulate Great Leaders – Learning and observing the people you admire is a great way to learn. For example, if you see a manager with exceptional speaking skills, you can reach out and ask them how they learned. You can also study the way they speak in meetings. The key is to have our eyes wide and be willing to learn, ask, and engage. In fact, if we begin to carry ourselves like a leader, that’s how people begin to treat us that way.
Whether you manage people or aspire to, be the kind of leader who is firm but cares. Communicate often, build rapport, and give constructive feedback so everyone can do their best work together.
Check out Jessica’s Youtube Channel for the full LIVE version of Jessica’s conversation.
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