People management skills are often cited on job listings and employer preferences as something they are looking for in job candidates. But what are people management skills? And can they be learnt?
People Management Skills List
Here is a list of relevant people management skills that employers look for:
Good people management is about dealing with people in a respectful and professional way. While few employees want a boss who is uptight and ‘by the book’ all the time, they do want one who will show fairness to all, and does not show discrimination against any who work for them.
As a manager, you must encourage your people to approach you if they have problems. The early highlighting of problems will save money and hassle compared to if employees let problems persist until you notice them. Surveys have been very damning of the approachability of british management in recent times, so this is a people management skill that will be appreciated.
Can you manage people in a technical field and have them achieve complicated goals? Your project management skills will be important for many jobs, especially as the spans of control increase after redundancies made during the latest recession.
Can you lead others and inspire them to follow? A good leader leads by example and the followers they accumulate are almost a natural side-effect. This is perhaps the toughest people management skill to learn, as leadership is hard to pass on through simple training. Find a good mentor who inspires you and try to learn from them.
In the modern day, a larger percentage of workers now work on flexible time, and demand the people management skill of flexibility. Rather than setting all the rules, managers are now given tighter resourcing constraints with which to do their jobs. Retail managers have experienced shift-working as a matter of course, but now this practise will become more relevant in office working environments also.
People Management Skills Examples
A great example of good people management skills was shown by Tony Blair in his final few years of office. With an unpopular decision to go into Iraq under his belt, Tony was facing a difficult time in office. To add to the public pressure, Blair also faced issues within his cabinet, especially from Gorden Brown, who was itching for people.
As a good people management skills example, Tony Blair was able to delegate enough responsibility to Gordon Brown to keep him content, (as Tony admitted in his memoirs, Gordon’s financial know-how was a core element of the government), while at the same time appearing to be a strong part leader to the public. Fighting on both fronts in this fashion is a good example of sound people management.
However, as a more business-like example of good management, you should look at the example of Warren Buffet. Warren Buffet, who was once the richest man in the world, (and who isn’t doing too bad now either) , leads a simple life. He still lives in the same, small house he bought in the 60′s for less than $100,000. He only replaces his beaten up car when his P.A. twists his arm, and he only demands an office that is big enough to fulfill its purpose – no flashiness needed. This show of frugality, sensibility and homeliness from a man who could buy a small country, is a fantastic comparison to what you’d expect. His management style is similar too, being down to earth, friendly and humble.
People Management Skills PPT
I found a great people management skills powerpoint (ppt) presentation on the web just yesterday that I’d like to share with you all here:
People Skills PowerPoint: The Essentials of People Management [download]
Also have a look at 12 People Management [download]
Improve Your People Management Skills
Improving your skills may take quite some time. I’m talking about years. Ideally if you’ve had a variety of experiences before taking up a management role, management skills will actually come to you surprisingly well. However if you find that you lack the confidence or don’t know the right thing to say to inspire your staff, then some management training courses would be very beneficial for you I believe. Management training will certainly help you to improve your people management skills in a risk-free environment, (no threat of being fired or judged if you do wrong).