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Getting to know you…

According to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), managers who strike a correct balance between support and autonomy with  their staff could see employees “go the extra mile”. The research found that Managers that provide guidance, feedback and an the appropriate level of empowerment are “key”.

OK……so don’t micro manage people and don’t ignore them – do you think you can remember that?

Forgive me if I sound a little cynical but do we really need research to tell us this?  Surely as human beings we know that we flourish with the the right amount of backing and encouragement combined with the space to find our own way.  As children, our parents (hopefully) supported us when we needed it, lovingly corrected and steered us as we grew and entrusted us with more independence and freedom as we increased our knowledge, skills and confidence.

So why do we need to be told that this is helpful in a work context? And why don’t managers instinctively do this if they want to create a culture of high performance? Perhaps the really fundamental issue here, is  not realising that we need these things but how can other people determine what  the “correct” balance is?  And isn’t this different for everyone anyway?

How can managers find this elusive balance and ensure that they give the right amount of support and autonomy to their people? Well, again with a flash of the blindingly obvious, surely this is  about knowing your staff, understanding what motivates them personally and what support and autonomy look and feel like to them?

When you treat someone as an individual, show genuine interest in them and really listen to them they’ll probably feel more motivated anyway but you’ll also find out what really matters to them and get an insight into how to get the best out of them.

Getting to know your staff and their own particular story, preferences and drivers is key to knowing how to motivate and manage them.

“To understand the heart and mind of a person, look not at what he has already achieved, but at what he aspires to” – Kahil Gibran

 

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