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Everyone Should Learn These 15 Management Skills To Be A Better Person

Everyone Should Learn These 15 Management Skills To Be A Better Person

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    Anyone in the professional world knows and understand the importance of a manager in business, managers bring organisation and order amongst diverse crowds, another overlooked role of management skills is how it can help in your personal life and how you engage with others.

    The list below outlines management skills (not taught in business school) that can help both your professional and private life

    1. Have great people skills

    People skills as defined by the business dictionary are “a set of skills enabling a person to get along with others, to communicate ideas effectively to achieve personal or business goals”. Most of our events around in life are centered on interacting with people. Effective leaders who get things done possess such abilities, they interact with different kinds of subordinates, from lazy ones to hardworking ones and even their least favorite person but they have mastered how to manage people for more effective results. This is a great ability to own in life as it creates a more pleasant environment not just for you but the people around you.

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      2. Increase your Emotional Quotient

      EQ, also known as emotional intelligence. Being in a leadership position, people often look up to you in the midst of crisis. Being able to empathize with others is what true leaders are made of. Emotional intelligence is being able to take others feeling into consideration yet still making rational decisions that benefits all parties involved. One such leader is Nelson Mandela. A freedom fighter who brought democracy to South Africa during the apartheid era. None of this would’ve been achieved had he not chosen to get rid of negative and toxic emotions and the anger that fed the black South Africans

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      nelson mandela

        3. Have good motivational skills

        Any manager who wishes to be better than ordinary knows that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Being able to motivate employees and get them as amped about the project as you are, is a rare gift. Great management is not about throwing your weight around trying to show whose boss, buts it’s about being of service. One such man is Martin Luther King Jr, an activist of the civil right movement in the USA and it all started with a dream, a dream where everyone would be treated equally despite their race and that motivated thousands to join in the movement and fight for racial equality. Moral of the story, majority of people appreciate being around those who have a positive outlook in life and that is what sets leaders apart.

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          4. Be a game changers

          Good management work well on the system, great management changes the system. It’s that word again, innovation. It’s not about being a rebel and fighting the system, but it’s about asking the why question. You don’t always have to follow the latest trends, sometimes even the little changes bring about revolutions to human civilization If that is too dramatic for you, just look at the iPad, Disney and many other greats who started with a single step.

          steve-jobs-quotes-innovation

            5. Have a vision

            AMC broadcasts a TV series called The Walking Dead, this may need no introduction for most but for those who do not know the show, the lead character is a man named Rick Grimes, played by Andrew Lincoln. The character is fictitious but still has a skill that every great manager should possess, having a vision, communicating that vision and seeing it through to the end. The plot is centered on the Zombie apocalypse and in season 3 of the series, his team of survivors see a prison, and while the rest are content to be on their merry way, Rick convinces the team to stay, he then persuades them of ridding the prison from the zombies and after that, just like he envisaged, they were able to turn the prison into a habitable and safe haven. Whether you believe in Zombies or not, you cannot doubt that having a vision and getting your team to not only see it but believe in it being a reality is the kind of cloth true leadership is cut from

            steve jobs vision

              6. Have great public speaking skills

              Every manager is a communicator. Effective communication is crucial to those you manage to understand instructions given. More than that you should be able to speak publicly in an irreproachable manner. This point ties up with motivation, people skills and sharing visions. Speaking to big crowds to get your point across is also a good self-esteem booster, you will find yourself mentally stimulated and it forces you to become a person with valuable insights and opinions to share with others.

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                7. Listening skills

                This is most important especially for managers who deal with big teams. Listening skills may sound obvious but it’s one many lack. The ability to; hear someone, understand them, sympathize with them, be on the lookout for ideas, watch out for body language, be attentive to the tone used, wait patiently for the person speaking to finish without interrupting – no matter how valid your point-, remove all other distractions and still put the person at ease all in a matter of minutes, is indeed something worth accomplishing. When you listen you become more objective, people feel respected when they know you’ve heard them out and can give rational reasons as to why or why not. Listening also makes you appear smarter.

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                  8. Great intra-personal skills

                  Intra-personal skills is basically being self-aware. Knowing oneself, understanding self and appreciating your innermost feelings. Yes, this is all about YOU! Do you know what your shortcomings are? Do you know where your limitations are, are you aware of your strengths, do you know what angers you most, have you mastered how to control it? These are typical questions intra-personal skills answer amongst many others. When you know who you are and what you want, not only will you find it easier to understand and tolerate others but you become less judgmental of peoples flaws, this also gives you willingness to help others and their short comings

                  silent-people-loudest-minds

                    9. Be decisive

                    This skill matters most in the midst of crisis where the only option is the right option. Great managers are able to make decisions quickly and effectively when the occasion calls for it Mark Zuckerberg says he wears the same outfit everyday so as to not waste time making decisions on futile matters. Your values do not have to be the same as Zuckerberg’s but the underlying principle is worth taking note. Decisiveness saves you more time than anything and it also helps with fast thinking skills, something we need every day.

                    decision
                      10.  Have conceptual skills

                      This is not just a skill required by CEO’s and executive directors. Conceptual skills as defined by education-portal.com are; the ability to think creatively and understand complicated or abstract ideas. Managers usually have to formulate ideas, plan, organize and strategize on execution. This skill helps with thinking and problem solving ability. When your mind is wired to always find solutions, you will find yourself solving even those matters that you thought were impossible to overcome. This makes your life much easier and more enjoyable.

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                        11. Be disciplined

                        The success of the Japanese economy is largely attributed to their uncanny ability to be self- disciplined. When mangers put down goals and targets that need to be accomplished, they lead by example and one such example is showing discipline. Not quitting and giving up until goals have been met. Doing what is required, when required without excuses. Discipline will help you achieve your personal goals, even something as big as starting your own business, because with discipline, whatever you put to mind you accomplish.

                        discipline

                          12. Be technologically savvy

                          This dos not require you to program software or code but knowing your computer is a survival skill in the 21st century. Managers in organisations are confronted by new in-house systems or applications and even basic databases, having Intel on new technology keeps you abreast and gives you competitive advantage. There is just no excuse to not knowing simple MS office. The web is full of information and online courses bridge any digital gap.

                          technology

                            13. Learn how to delegate

                            Most people in position of authority don’t delegate out of fear that no one can do the job like they can, and that is the wrong approach to it. In fact having someone do something completely different to how you get it done is sometimes the source of innovation in the organisation. Delegation gives others the opportunity to show their strengths as well, it allows for fair game and saves you time to focus on your priority list.

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                              14. Be a team builder

                              There is nothing better than a manager who build a sense of unity in an organisation. People work better in teams and even more so, can be very productive when they feel they belong. Great managers build good team spirit and always look out for their teams. People trust you more when they believe you have their best interest at heart.

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                                15. Brush up on your skills

                                This is not just for managers but for everyone in general. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that you’re done with school after a degree or writing board exam. The learning never stops. You can learn new skills as well or get the update on what’s new in your industry. The worse position to be in is irrelevant.

                                learning

                                  Becoming a better you is something worth striving for and what’s even more rewarding is not so much reaching your goals but who you become in pursuit of them.

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                                  Kayiba Mpoyi

                                  Writer by birth

                                  Don’t Wait for People’s Validation, Do It Yourself, Every Single Day 10 Reasons Why Some People Will Never Succeed Successful Businesses Use This Tool to Predict the Future and Get Ahead of Their Competitors 15 Signs You’re Doing Better You Think You Are The Key To Reaching Your Goals: Willpower And Planning

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                                  Last Updated on October 22, 2020

                                  8 Simple Ways to Be a Better Listener

                                  8 Simple Ways to Be a Better Listener

                                  How would you feel if you were sharing a personal story and noticed that the person to whom you were speaking wasn’t really listening? You probably wouldn’t be too thrilled.

                                  Unfortunately, that is the case for many people. Most individuals are not good listeners. They are good pretenders. The thing is, true listening requires work—more work than people are willing to invest. Quality conversation is about “give and take.” Most people, however, want to just give—their words, that is. Being on the receiving end as the listener may seem boring, but it’s essential.

                                  When you are attending to someone and paying attention to what they’re saying, it’s a sign of caring and respect. The hitch is that attending requires an act of will, which sometimes goes against what our minds naturally do—roaming around aimlessly and thinking about whatnot, instead of listening—the greatest act of thoughtfulness.

                                  Without active listening, people often feel unheard and unacknowledged. That’s why it’s important for everyone to learn how to be a better listener.

                                  What Makes People Poor Listeners?

                                  Good listening skills can be learned, but first, let’s take a look at some of the things that you might be doing that makes you a poor listener.

                                  1. You Want to Talk to Yourself

                                  Well, who doesn’t? We all have something to say, right? But when you are looking at someone pretending to be listening while, all along, they’re mentally planning all the amazing things they’re going to say, it is a disservice to the speaker.

                                  Yes, maybe what the other person is saying is not the most exciting thing in the world. Still, they deserve to be heard. You always have the ability to steer the conversation in another direction by asking questions.

                                  It’s okay to want to talk. It’s normal, even. Keep in mind, however, that when your turn does come around, you’ll want someone to listen to you.

                                  2. You Disagree With What Is Being Said

                                  This is another thing that makes you an inadequate listener—hearing something with which you disagree with and immediately tuning out. Then, you lie in wait so you can tell the speaker how wrong they are. You’re eager to make your point and prove the speaker wrong. You think that once you speak your “truth,” others will know how mistaken the speaker is, thank you for setting them straight, and encourage you to elaborate on what you have to say. Dream on.

                                  Disagreeing with your speaker, however frustrating that might be, is no reason to tune them out and ready yourself to spew your staggering rebuttal. By listening, you might actually glean an interesting nugget of information that you were previously unaware of.

                                  3. You Are Doing Five Other Things While You’re “Listening”

                                  It is impossible to listen to someone while you’re texting, reading, playing Sudoku, etc. But people do it all the time—I know I have.

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                                  I’ve actually tried to balance my checkbook while pretending to listen to the person on the other line. It didn’t work. I had to keep asking, “what did you say?” I can only admit this now because I rarely do it anymore. With work, I’ve succeeded in becoming a better listener. It takes a great deal of concentration, but it’s certainly worth it.

                                  If you’re truly going to listen, then you must: listen! M. Scott Peck, M.D., in his book The Road Less Travel, says, “you cannot truly listen to anyone and do anything else at the same time.” If you are too busy to actually listen, let the speaker know, and arrange for another time to talk. It’s simple as that!

                                  4. You Appoint Yourself as Judge

                                  While you’re “listening,” you decide that the speaker doesn’t know what they’re talking about. As the “expert,” you know more. So, what’s the point of even listening?

                                  To you, the only sound you hear once you decide they’re wrong is, “Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah!” But before you bang that gavel, just know you may not have all the necessary information. To do that, you’d have to really listen, wouldn’t you? Also, make sure you don’t judge someone by their accent, the way they sound, or the structure of their sentences.

                                  My dad is nearly 91. His English is sometimes a little broken and hard to understand. People wrongly assume that he doesn’t know what he’s talking about—they’re quite mistaken. My dad is a highly intelligent man who has English as his second language. He knows what he’s saying and understands the language perfectly.

                                  Keep that in mind when listening to a foreigner, or someone who perhaps has a difficult time putting their thoughts into words.

                                  Now, you know some of the things that make for an inferior listener. If none of the items above resonate with you, great! You’re a better listener than most.

                                  How To Be a Better Listener

                                  For conversation’s sake, though, let’s just say that maybe you need some work in the listening department, and after reading this article, you make the decision to improve. What, then, are some of the things you need to do to make that happen? How can you be a better listener?

                                  1. Pay Attention

                                  A good listener is attentive. They’re not looking at their watch, phone, or thinking about their dinner plans. They’re focused and paying attention to what the other person is saying. This is called active listening.

                                  According to Skills You Need, “active listening involves listening with all senses. As well as giving full attention to the speaker, it is important that the ‘active listener’ is also ‘seen’ to be listening—otherwise, the speaker may conclude that what they are talking about is uninteresting to the listener.”[1]

                                  As I mentioned, it’s normal for the mind to wander. We’re human, after all. But a good listener will rein those thoughts back in as soon as they notice their attention waning.

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                                  I want to note here that you can also “listen” to bodily cues. You can assume that if someone keeps looking at their watch or over their shoulder, their focus isn’t on the conversation. The key is to just pay attention.

                                  2. Use Positive Body Language

                                  You can infer a lot from a person’s body language. Are they interested, bored, or anxious?

                                  A good listener’s body language is open. They lean forward and express curiosity in what is being said. Their facial expression is either smiling, showing concern, conveying empathy, etc. They’re letting the speaker know that they’re being heard.

                                  People say things for a reason—they want some type of feedback. For example, you tell your spouse, “I had a really rough day!” and your husband continues to check his newsfeed while nodding his head. Not a good response.

                                  But what if your husband were to look up with questioning eyes, put his phone down, and say, “Oh, no. What happened?” How would feel, then? The answer is obvious.

                                  According to Alan Gurney,[2]

                                  “An active listener pays full attention to the speaker and ensures they understand the information being delivered. You can’t be distracted by an incoming call or a Facebook status update. You have to be present and in the moment.

                                  Body language is an important tool to ensure you do this. The correct body language makes you a better active listener and therefore more ‘open’ and receptive to what the speaker is saying. At the same time, it indicates that you are listening to them.”

                                  3. Avoid Interrupting the Speaker

                                  I am certain you wouldn’t want to be in the middle of a sentence only to see the other person holding up a finger or their mouth open, ready to step into your unfinished verbiage. It’s rude and causes anxiety. You would, more than likely, feel a need to rush what you’re saying just to finish your sentence.

                                  Interrupting is a sign of disrespect. It is essentially saying, “what I have to say is much more important than what you’re saying.” When you interrupt the speaker, they feel frustrated, hurried, and unimportant.

                                  Interrupting a speaker to agree, disagree, argue, etc., causes the speaker to lose track of what they are saying. It’s extremely frustrating. Whatever you have to say can wait until the other person is done.

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                                  Be polite and wait your turn!

                                  4. Ask Questions

                                  Asking questions is one of the best ways to show you’re interested. If someone is telling you about their ski trip to Mammoth, don’t respond with, “that’s nice.” That would show a lack of interest and disrespect. Instead, you can ask, “how long have you been skiing?” “Did you find it difficult to learn?” “What was your favorite part of the trip?” etc. The person will think highly of you and consider you a great conversationalist just by you asking a few questions.

                                  5. Just Listen

                                  This may seem counterintuitive. When you’re conversing with someone, it’s usually back and forth. On occasion, all that is required of you is to listen, smile, or nod your head, and your speaker will feel like they’re really being heard and understood.

                                  I once sat with a client for 45 minutes without saying a word. She came into my office in distress. I had her sit down, and then she started crying softly. I sat with her—that’s all I did. At the end of the session, she stood, told me she felt much better, and then left.

                                  I have to admit that 45 minutes without saying a word was tough. But she didn’t need me to say anything. She needed a safe space in which she could emote without interruption, judgment, or me trying to “fix” something.

                                  6. Remember and Follow Up

                                  Part of being a great listener is remembering what the speaker has said to you, then following up with them.

                                  For example, in a recent conversation you had with your co-worker Jacob, he told you that his wife had gotten a promotion and that they were contemplating moving to New York. The next time you run into Jacob, you may want to say, “Hey, Jacob! Whatever happened with your wife’s promotion?” At this point, Jacob will know you really heard what he said and that you’re interested to see how things turned out. What a gift!

                                  According to new research, “people who ask questions, particularly follow-up questions, may become better managers, land better jobs, and even win second dates.”[3]

                                  It’s so simple to show you care. Just remember a few facts and follow up on them. If you do this regularly, you will make more friends.

                                  7. Keep Confidential Information Confidential

                                  If you really want to be a better listener, listen with care. If what you’re hearing is confidential, keep it that way, no matter how tempting it might be to tell someone else, especially if you have friends in common. Being a good listener means being trustworthy and sensitive with shared information.

                                  Whatever is told to you in confidence is not to be revealed. Assure your speaker that their information is safe with you. They will feel relieved that they have someone with whom they can share their burden without fear of it getting out.

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                                  Keeping someone’s confidence helps to deepen your relationship. Also, “one of the most important elements of confidentiality is that it helps to build and develop trust. It potentially allows for the free flow of information between the client and worker and acknowledges that a client’s personal life and all the issues and problems that they have belong to them.”[4]

                                  Be like a therapist: listen and withhold judgment.

                                  NOTE: I must add here that while therapists keep everything in a session confidential, there are exceptions:

                                  1. If the client may be an immediate danger to himself or others.
                                  2. If the client is endangering a population that cannot protect itself, such as in the case of a child or elder abuse.

                                  8. Maintain Eye Contact

                                  When someone is talking, they are usually saying something they consider meaningful. They don’t want their listener reading a text, looking at their fingernails, or bending down to pet a pooch on the street. A speaker wants all eyes on them. It lets them know that what they’re saying has value.

                                  Eye contact is very powerful. It can relay many things without anything being said. Currently, it’s more important than ever with the Covid-19 Pandemic. People can’t see your whole face, but they can definitely read your eyes.

                                  By eye contact, I don’t mean a hard, creepy stare—just a gaze in the speaker’s direction will do. Make it a point the next time you’re in a conversation to maintain eye contact with your speaker. Avoid the temptation to look anywhere but at their face. I know it’s not easy, especially if you’re not interested in what they’re talking about. But as I said, you can redirect the conversation in a different direction or just let the person know you’ve got to get going.

                                  Final Thoughts

                                  Listening attentively will add to your connection with anyone in your life. Now, more than ever, when people are so disconnected due to smartphones and social media, listening skills are critical.

                                  You can build better, more honest, and deeper relationships by simply being there, paying attention, and asking questions that make the speaker feel like what they have to say matters.

                                  And isn’t that a great goal? To make people feel as if they matter? So, go out and start honing those listening skills. You’ve got two great ears. Now use them!

                                  More Tips on How to Be a Better Listener

                                  Featured photo credit: Joshua Rodriguez via unsplash.com

                                  Reference

                                  [1] Skills You Need: Active Listening
                                  [2] Filtered: Body language for active listening
                                  [3] Forbes: People Will Like You More If You Start Asking Follow-up Questions
                                  [4] TAFE NSW Sydney eLearning Moodle: Confidentiality

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