1. Not making the transition from worker to manager
As a worker, you were held accountable solely for your own job and responsibilities. Now, all of a sudden, you are responsible for the results of a group of people – not just for yourself. As a result, you must tap into a new set of business skills – people skills. Some of the best employees become the worst managers because they fail to make this transition.
2. Not setting clear goals and expectations
The fastest way to derail your employees’ engine is to leave them in the dark without goals and directives. Your employees will have few challenges and even less motivation. You must meet with your employees to develop attainable goals, to help them understand what is expected of them, and to give them a vision to work toward. Not only should you work with them to set the goals, but also to achieve the goals.
3. Failing to delegate
You simply can’t do everything by yourself. But, even if you could, it would not be an effective use of your time or your talent. Besides, when you delegate, you create more opportunities for your employees, and projects that at first seem overwhelming become totally manageable once assigned to a team.
4. Not recognizing employee achievement
Do not get so caught up in your workload and the delegation of work that you overlook opportunities to acknowledge your employees’ successes. In the midst of downsizing, uncertainty, and constant change, employee recognition, is more essential than ever, improving morale, performance, and loyalty. Most times the most effective reward is personal and written recognition.
5. Failing to communicate
The health of companies depends on widespread dissemination of information. Poor managers use the control of information as power, to ensure they are the most knowledgeable, and therefore, the most valuable employees to an organization. However, employees have the right to know what is going on, so that they are able to make the best decisions for themselves as well as the organization. In this way, managers should be approachable.
6. Not making time for employees
As a manager, you must make and take time for people. Managing is a people job. You must assess your employees’ individual needs and address them. When employees talk, be sure you’re there to listen.
7. Going for the quick fix over the lasting solution
Many managers dispense painkillers when they should be finding the tumor and performing major surgery. As a manager, you will not last long just treating symptoms; you need to take the time to seek out long-term solutions to problems.
8. Starting your day without a plan of actionv
Time management plays a large role in your day-to-day and long-term success. This entails doing the right things efficiently. Other people will take all your time if you let them, so you must begin each day with a clear idea of allotted personal time and employee time.
9. Working with a messy desk or work area
Studies show that the person with a messy desk spends, on average, one and a half hours per day trying to find things or being distracted by things. This adds up to seven and a half hours a week in lost productivity, not to mention appearing very unprofessional.
10. Not taking a lunch break
After several hours without eating, studies prove, that you start to dull out. Thus, a lunch break, even if it’s just a short 15 minute break, helps to recharge your batteries, and more effectively handle afternoon tasks. Consistently skipping lunch to save time will only cost you in lost productivity.
11. Getting out of balance with your life
Attention workaholics: there’s more to life than work. You have health, family, financial, spiritual, intellectual, and social pursuits and aspects in your life. If you spend a sufficient quantity and quality of time in each area, you should feel happy and productive at work. It’s when you neglect one or more areas in your life that other areas, especially your work life starts to show signs of suffering.
12. Resisting change
The best managers around the world are positive and forward-looking. They proactively anticipate changes coming their way and make plans to address them before they hit their organization. Resisting change will get you nowhere.
13. Taking it all too seriously — Watch your ego
A manager with a big ego will most likely alienate his/her employees. Pride is never justified as the basis for a business decision. Above all, you have to maintain a sense of humour. Make a fun environment for your employees and for yourself. When you retire you won’t be remembered for your fantastic budget or discipline, people will remember someone who brightened their days.