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Managers Matter – Here’s Why

Recognize This! – You need every leader on board with your initiatives to achieve your success goals in the new year.

2013 is just around the corner. The turning of the new year is a prime opportunity to reset expectations and goals for employees, realigning everyone behind your strategic objectives. Are your managers ready for this challenge?

Earlier this month, Matt Monge wrote about the importance of getting your leaders behind your important initiatives, saying:

“We can talk all we want about having an engaged workplace (or being more efficient, or having better training, or whatever), and we can even really want an engaged workplace (or those other things); but until we—meaning you, me, and every other manager or leader—start doing things as individual leaders to create that environment with our teams, it’s not going to happen across the organization.”

Indeed, every leader in your organization (whether they bear the title of “manager” or not) must be behind your efforts to create a culture and mission with which employees want to engage.  Why? Results of a survey conducted by MSW Research and Dale Carnegie Training and cited in Forbes showed:

“The attitude and actions of the immediate supervisor can enhance employee engagement or can create an atmosphere where an employee becomes disengaged.  In addition, employees said that believing in the ability of senior leadership to take their input, lead the company in the right direction and openly communicate the state of the organization is key in driving engagement.”

Managers matter. Check out this list of top 10 reasons your top talent will leave. Notice each starts with “You failed…,” meaning you as the manager failed to unleash everything they had to offer. Yes, employees can and do choose to leave for personal reasons unrelated to work, but most often, managers are the primary factor in employee decisions to stay or leave. (For the upside perspective, read these tips for hanging onto your best and brightest talent.)

Are your managers on board with your major initiatives?

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3 Responses

  1. [...] a company grows, the CEO cannot be everywhere at the same time. Leaders must carry the CEO’s message and passion deep into the organization — leaders who don’t hurt your culture. You’re only [...]

  2. I fully agree with your premise that all leaders must carry the important strategies and objectives of the senior leadership team, at every opportunity, at all levels of the company. Continual repetition is necessary! That said, this premise presupposes that the CEO has been articulate with those significant few priorities and has his/her finger print on it. My experience is that clearly isn’t always the case, especially as it relates to continuous improvement initiatives like Lean and Six Sigma. Surveys continue to report, as they have for 30 years or so, that about 4 out of 5 companies who start down this road end up in the side ditch in less that 5 years. Most accomplish short-term gains but fail to sustain. It’s all about leadership and that starts at the top. Where are all the CEOs who have delegated/abdicated this responsibility to ignite the rebirth of manufacturing in this country? My apologies to those few out there who are leading the right way on this important topic for the health of the U.S. economy and the rebuilding of the middle class in this country.

    Larry E. Fast, Author
    The 12 Principles of Manufacturing Excellence–A Leader’s Guide to Achieving and Sustaining Excellence

    • Derek Irvine says:

      Larry, you raise valuable, relevant concerns. Leadership from the CEO desk is only as good as the CEO and how he/she leads. In the spirit of Six Sigma, my goal is to contribute to continuous improvement in this aspect.

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