What can The Staple Singers teach us about management?

management‘If you don’t respect yourself ain’t nobody gonna give a good cahoot’ is one of my all-time favourite song lyrics (from The Staple Singers brilliant ‘respect yourself’) but it only occurred to me recently how relevant it is to management. Say what? Yep, I know it sounds random but (to badly paraphrase) if you don’t respect yourself as a manager, can you really expect your staff to give a good cahoot? Here are a few tips on respect

Management tip 1: Respect your role

Have you ever met a manager who doesn’t seem to like managing? I’ve worked with so many managers (and team leaders and supervisors) who just don’t seem to want to manage. More specifically, they don’t want to manage people –doing the sometimes tough stuff; agreeing targets, monitoring performance, giving feedback etc. It’s a mystery as to why they took on a management role in the first place (but go on, make a guess).  The problem is, of course, that people want to be well managed. They want, according to research from Gallup,  ‘job clarity and priorities’ and ‘ongoing feedback and communication’. But you knew that. My point is the management role is absolutely crucial not just to the success of the business you work in but also to the job satisfaction of the people who work there. It’s a role that really does require respect. This means you also need to…

Management tip 2: Respect your ability to learn

Like any other high-level set of skills learning how to manage is an ongoing and (sometimes) challenging process. It takes time and it takes effort. But, on the basis that as you’ve been promoted to manager, can we assume that you’ve along with way learned other high-level skills? Management can be learned and you can learn it. How? Firstly I’d suggest you look for support from your manager. Get clear first on what you need to focus on; objective setting? Giving feedback? Dealing with underperformance? Motivation techniques? When you know what you need it’s much easier to ask for it. Secondly, do some research. There’s a huge amount of ‘how to’ information on management available online and if you’d like some tips for how to learn from management and leadership blogs take a look HERE

Management tip 3: Respect your lack of perfection

Nobody wants to be managed by the ‘perfect’ manager; the person who never makes a mistake, who knows all the answers, who never needs advice or input. We want to be managed by humans – people like us with flaws and foibles. Mistakes are how we learn and the more you make, the more you learn (you can read more about not being perfect and how to learn from mistakes HERE)


Of course you’ve also got to respect your staff, but let’s look at that in another article. So a quick question; are you respecting yourself as a manager?

Management Skills: Want to know more?

managementJoan Henshaw is the author of the ’10 Minute Management’ series of books and videos. Read about these practical, step-by-step books HERE and videos HERE


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