One of the most important and useful management skills is having a clear understanding of the impact of our beliefs about people management and an ability to develop positive beliefs. Why? Because what we believe about people management (and what we assume our employees believe) has a huge impact upon our confidence and competence and, of course, on our employee’s performance and job satisfaction
So how do we get clarity on our beliefs and how do we develop positive beliefs? Here are some ideas
Management Skills One: Understand Your Current Beliefs
Let me ask you a question. What do you believe about people management? Not too sure? Then why not try brainstorming a list using one of these ‘lead ins’;
• People management is …
• The purpose of people management is…
• The benefits of effective people management are …
• The worst thing about people management is …
• What I love and hate about people management is …
I’m sure you get the idea. What we’re simply aiming to do here is get some clarity on your core beliefs
Management Skills Two: Ditch the ‘Barrier Beliefs’
I know of three beliefs that I see many managers holding that are a barrier to management confidence and competence. These barrier beliefs are:
• Managers Have to Earn the Right to Manage
(read more about management rights here)
• Employees Don’t Like Being Managed
• Managers Have to Be Perfect (No Mistakes Allowed)
(read more at ‘Management Skills: Want to Skyrocket your Management Confidence? Then Stop Trying To Be Perfect!’)
I’m guessing that, even at first glance, you can see that these aren’t exactly useful beliefs? Of course, these may not be your beliefs but can we agree that one of the most useful management skills is to be able to ditch the beliefs that aren’t useful?
So, looking at the list you made earlier, what are the beliefs you are holding about managing people that aren’t serving you well?
What would have to happen for you to be able to ditch those beliefs? How can you make this happen?
Management Skills Three: Identify Positive Beliefs
So far we have applied the management skills of understanding our current beliefs and ditching our barrier beliefs. Next in our set of management skills is to identify a range of beliefs that will serve us well in building our management confidence and competence.
Here are three approaches you could try
1. Simply ask yourself ; ‘in order to be a competent and confident manager, what would I need to believe?’
2. Look at other people’s ideas on positive beliefs about management. You could take a look at
• This blog by Rosa Say ‘The 10 Beliefs of Great Managers’
3. Identify a manager you consider to be very competent and confident and ask them what their beliefs are about people management. You might also ask how they developed those beliefs and how they maintain those beliefs
Having identified a range of positive beliefs you can then ask ‘what would need to happen for me to believe this?’ Once you’ve identified what needs to happen (for example; do you need more training? More tools and techniques? More practice?) you can then set about making those things happen and, more importantly, start building the beliefs that will have a great impact on your management confidence and competence
Management Skills and Positive Beliefs Summary
Positive beliefs are so important to building our management confidence and competence. So, over to you…
What do you think are the most positive beliefs about people management? What advice would you give to managers about building positive beliefs?