12 Management Characteristics Every Manager Should Adopt

being an effective manager

Part of being an effective manager means understanding how to read people and making sure they are working to their strengths. But there is so much more. That’s why we asked 12 entrepreneurs from Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) the following question:

“What management characteristic has served you best over the past year and why?”

Here’s what YEC community members had to say:

On Being An Effective Manager

1. Identifying Demotivators

“Rather than trying to motivate your team members, you should look at identifying what is potentially demotivating them and help to remove it. This could be too much admin work involved with their role, not giving them enough praise, not having a clear enough career path for them, or it could be related to their personal life. Whatever it is, seek it out and get rid of it. That’s the best motivation.” ~ Finn Kelly, WE LOVE NUMBERS

2. Focusing on Frequent Feedback

“I’ve found that a typical annual performance review involves steering the ship way too late, and is an overwhelming feedback dump for employees. That’s why I focused on frequent feedback with my team. Over the last year, a system that’s seen remarkable success is a very brief one-on-one with each employee weekly. It takes less than five minutes, and the direction provided is well worth it.” ~Elle KaplanLexION Capital

3. Leveraging Specializations

“When you start out as an entrepreneur, you’re wearing many hats. But you quickly find out that some of those hats would be better worn by others. Greatmanagers know how to “fire themselves” out of certain roles, handing over the baton to specialists who do that thing at a beyond-A+ level as the company grows.” ~ Sharam Fouladgar-MercerAirPR

4. Acknowledging When You Don’t Know an Answer

“I used to answer everything in real time. In practice, that meant that my gut feeling guided my decision making. In the past year, I’ve focused on slowing down when an employee brings up an issue that’s complex. Even if I’m confident of my answer, I say, “Thanks for that great question. I’m not sure, but I’ll get back to you later today.” That gives space to research and nail the response.” ~ Aaron Schwartz, ModifyWatches.com

5. Being a Direct Communicator

“My team knows me as someone who often gives direct, no-frills advice such as, ‘Please tell the client X’ or ‘Next you need to do Y.’  Since I don’t have the time to overthink most decisions, it’s become second nature for me to communicate in a very straight-forward way.” ~ Nicole Munoz, Start Ranking Now

6. Having Empathy and Patience

“To me, being an effective manager is about empathy and patience. Empathy allows you to better understand, relate, and position the company goals relative to each individual team member in order to drive their passion and focus. Patience allows you to give people room to perform, although you need to set and adhere to actionable, measurable, specific, and timely goals.” ~ Andy KaruzaFenSens

7. Being Mindful of Others

“I pay attention to my team members, even if they aren’t speaking directly to me. I keep up with the dates they put on the team calendar, I look at their schedules, and I take note of their work. I’m mindful when someone is doing an exceptionally good job and send recognition, which I’ve seen makes a huge difference in motivation and results.” ~ Jared BrownHubstaff

8. Providing Consistent, Reliable Business Updates

“At GumGum, we have massively transparent quarterly all-hands calls with the entire company where I update them on what’s been accomplished, what challenges we’re facing, what our plans are for the next quarter and answer any and all questions. This helps bring everyone together so we all understand where we’re at and where we’re going.” ~ Ophir TanzGumGum

9. Setting Quantifiable Goals

“Setting team goals that are 100 percent quantifiable is one of the best things we have done. They make performance reviews easier, everyone knows the goal, and if achieved, everyone benefits.” ~ Peter BoydPaperStreet Web Design

10. Empowering Employees in Order to Scale

“Empowering your employees is one of the best ways to help grow leaders within your business. If you’re constantly micromanaging, they’ll never develop the experience to tackle problems on their own. But if you empower employees to go above and beyond their role, they’ll constantly be faced with scenarios that will help them further sharpen their skills and allow your company to scale up.” ~Aron Susman, TheSquareFoot

11. Getting in the Trenches

“We are constantly trying to refine our processes and streamline our practices. In order to better understand my team and our customer, it is helpful to answer the phones and get right into the mix with my sales and operations teams. Getting to know their obstacles and learning more about our customers helps me to make better decisions for Trustify.” ~ Jennifer Mellon, Trustify

12. Separating Emotions From Decisions

“Being less personal with team members has allowed me to make more informed decisions about our company’s roster by giving me the power to distance my emotions from those decisions. Often times, our personal relationships with employees dulls our ability to recognize friction or address challenges in a more straightforward way.” ~ Blair ThomasFirst American Merchant

Manager Photo via Shutterstock

The Young Entrepreneur Council The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched StartupCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.