Create a culture of openness and engagement
A good manager will lead their team by example. Ensure you set clear goals and expectations for your team, so you are all working toward the same purpose. Try to make your staff feel valued and involved in your department and give them opportunities to feed back their views. Make sure you know how to manage common health problems effectively e.g. mental health issues, musculoskeletal problems.
Finally, take steps to manage your own personal health and wellbeing and to build up your resilience. The section on resilience may help you here.
Make time for positive reinforcement for example, say 'Thank you'.
All you need to know in 30 seconds
- Empowering individual employees will strengthen your team.
- Make time for positive reinforcement - say ‘thank you’ often.
- Be consistent, listen to your employees and support them going forward.
- Keep things in perspective and manage the person, not the issue.
- Know who you can go to for help and advice, for example Occupational Health, Human Resources, Organisational Development or Health and Safety representatives.
- Make use of data and metrics.
- Pay real attention to iMatter survey results and engage your teams in meaningful action planning
- Walk the talk, aim to create an open and engaged team, value your employees.
All you need to know in detail
There are simple ways to manage your team more effectively. They don’t require time or money, and most you can start right away. Supporting your employees by saying thank you for a job well done and creating a culture of openness can make a difference in promoting wellbeing among your employees.
Make time for positive reinforcement for example, say 'Thank you', or 'Tough shift, thanks for your support' etc.
If you have time say well done, ask what positives they will take away from today, or what they are most pleased about. This allows them to reflect on their personal sense of achievement and allows you the opportunity as their manager to say well done. We automatically focus on the negative and the one thing we could have done better. Let your team leave work focusing on what they did well, and that they had the opportunity to share this with you.
As a manager, you will have potentially difficult or challenging conversations with employees from time to time. Act when this is needed, taking an honest, open approach. Being consistent will ensure expectations are clear to all.
Listen and support
Supporting and empowering individual employees will strengthen the whole team. Try to set aside time to be available for your employees or if your own workload restricts this, allow for a minimum period of time during the week when you will be available and let employees know. This reinforces that they are important because you have made them your priority. Often knowing this time is available if they need it can be enough to make your employees feel valued.
Manage the person, not their issue
Work with them to help them find a way forward, for example, what impact is this having? What could you do about it? What will you do about it? Keep an eye on your team’s workload to ensure what they are expected to deliver is realistic within the timescales.
Rather than taking problems off the employee, build up their resilience instead by empowering them to find the solution.
Set up your managers’ toolbox
As a manager, you won't have all the answers and shouldn’t expect yourself to. What you can do is know who your key stakeholders are and who your employee can approach to assist them. This could include HR, OH, OD, counselling, health and safety reps etc.
Keeping your colleagues informed of where they can seek the help they might need will help them feel more supported.