Rise Performance Group

Avoid Mediocrity: Ways to Transform Incompetent Managers

By Aoife Gorey

Relationship building is an art, but not every manager is a natural relationship artist.

We have recently covered many solutions to managing difficult employees, but just as often as employees can act up, so can the boss. Ineffective managers can contribute to the decline of productivity in the workplace. Organizational leaders who pay attention to detail should act quickly if they detect any symptoms of incompetence.

Incompetent Managers:

  • Discourage decision-making by failing to make decisions themselves, or by refusing to own up to a decision if it might end in criticism
  • Prevent the completion of tasks because they are unable to delegate for fear of being outperformed by their team members
  • React to problems instead of creating an organized plan
  • Hinder development within themselves and their employees, which inevitably stunts the overall productivity of the company
  • Communicate the organizations goals and objectives ineffectively

Providing mentoring to managers may not always be easy, but it is always essential. Whether you find yourself struggling as a manager or attempting to lead these managers, here are some great tips to transform mediocre and incompetent managers.

1. Start small – Make everything better
Take pride in each and every task that you must accomplish. Exert the necessary energy to do each task better than ever before. Of course, it is easy to do the bare minimum; however, what if instead of the norm, you went above and beyond? You do not need to reinvent your product line, or revamp a strategy in your organization. Instead, challenge yourself to strive to make your daily tasks insanely great! Something as simple as answering the telephone; take each call with enthusiasm and willingness to help. Igniting this change in your department will be evident among your team and encourage them to take the same approach in their work.

2. Enjoy what you do
Whether or not you enjoy every minute of your work day, you should be able to find some satisfaction in going to work each morning. Don’t just do your job, love it. Connect with co-workers in other departments, devote yourself to your team, and be enthusiastic about your company and what it stands for. This type of attitude causes a domino effect of positivity. According to Radical 1000 research, 87 percent of people would choose a job they love that reduces their salary by half over a job they hate that triples their current salary. When you care about your job, you are ultimately more productive. How can you expect your team to be excited about work if you are not?

3. Recognize a job well done
Does your boss take credit for your work without giving you the recognition you deserve? We all have our moments of complaining about these ‘bad bosses’. Employee recognition, although a simple concept, works. Employees feel better and work harder. This positive attitude is easily transferred to customers. Many companies argue that their employees are the backbone of their organization, yet so many managers fail to show employees the recognition they deserve. If your budget does not allow for a monetary bonus, do not underestimate the power of verbal praise. It is human nature to appreciate feeling valued. Employee recognition should be immediate upon accomplishment and/or high performance.

4. Map out your management team
Determine the individuals that have what it takes to be a manager. Do this with underperforming managers who likely have less interest in or aptitude for leadership to other positions in your organization where they have the potential to become top performers.

What has been your experience with incompetent managers? How do you mentor these individuals in your organization?

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