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  • Evan Wirig

What Great Managers Do Differently

A good manager is common. A great manager is exceptional. Managers have a direct impact on a team's success and help accomplish long-term goals and objectives. But what makes one person rise above another in terms of leadership and management? Here are five things that set great managers apart from their peers:

Great managers are visionaries

Great managers see the big picture. They understand where a project or task fits into the overall scheme of things. They have an eye for detail, but they also know when to step back to avoid micromanaging.

Great managers make it their business to know what's going on in their department and throughout the company at large. It's not enough just to be aware of what's happening. They must also be able to anticipate challenges before they come up, as well as find solutions when problems arise unexpectedly (and they will). This requires constant communication with team members at all levels, from entry-level right up through executive leadership, so that everyone knows exactly where things stand at any given moment in time.

Great managers inspire their teams

Inspiration is a powerful motivator. When people are inspired to do something they are more likely to achieve their goals and be happier with their work.

The same holds true for team members. When they're inspired by their manager and what they're trying to accomplish together as a group, they'll be more engaged in their work and more willing to go above and beyond on behalf of the company's success.

Great managers know how to delegate effectively

Managers who are good at delegating tasks effectively:

  • Understand the importance of delegation.

  • Know how to delegate effectively.

  • When they should delegate tasks, and when they shouldn't. For example, if you have a task that you're not comfortable with or don't know how to do yourself, it's probably better for you or your team member(s) if someone else takes on that responsibility instead of trying their hand at it themselves in an attempt to learn from the experience (which will likely end up being more time consuming). There are also times when managers need their employees' help with certain projects that aren't part of their regular job description--these situations call for effective delegation as well!

Great managers have the right priorities

Setting priorities is one of the most important things that a manager can do for their team, but it's also one of the hardest things to get right. It's easy to assume that all tasks are equally important and should be done as soon as possible--after all, managers want to make sure their team is productive and meeting deadlines. But this isn't always best for business goals or morale. Sometimes it makes sense to focus on high-value activities first before jumping into lower-priority work that won't add much value in comparison (like cleaning up messy desks).

Great managers are good communicators

Some might think that good communication is about talking. But it's not. Good communicators are good listeners, who ask questions and listen to what their team members are saying. They make their teams feel comfortable by expressing their feelings and emotions and taking time to understand the perspectives of others.

Great managers also know that people learn best when they can see what they're learning applied right away--so great managers use examples from real-life situations to help explain concepts or processes at work, rather than just telling people what needs done (which can be confusing).

Great managers create a sense of ownership in the team

When employees feel like they're an important part of something bigger than themselves, they have more motivation and productivity, engagement with their company's mission, loyalty toward their employer (and thus less turnover), willingness to go above and beyond what's expected of them--all things that make great managers great!

It's important to be an effective leader and manager, especially if you want to see your career progress

Managers are responsible for the success of the team, company and business. If you want to be a great manager, it's important that you understand what your role is in this process.

The first thing to remember is that as a manager, it's your job to help other people succeed. Even if someone isn't doing their job well or isn't pulling their weight (or both), if they're still able to do their work well enough for it to meet expectations then there's no need for intervention from above - instead of focusing on how much work needs doing and how quickly it should be done; focus on helping those around you do better so they can contribute more effectively.

If you are looking for a professional in Human Resources that can help provide a concise plan to build more effective managers for your organization, contact Executive Compass, an executive-level HR specialty firm strategically designed to navigate business in today’s complicated and ever-changing working world. From recruitment and onboarding to employee benefits, organizational development, and employee relations, there’s no step in the business life cycle that Executive Compass is not equipped to handle. Contact Executive Compass by visiting, calling 760-504-6352, or emailing

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