Breedlove's Briefing: Great Managers Are Also Teachers

January 27 - Stephanie Breedlove

Hi! I’m Stephanie Breedlove, Co-Founder of HomePay, Author and Angel Investor.

I absolutely adore taking an idea and giving it life in the form a business, then leading it to its full potential. Nothing is more fun. (Seriously!) I’d love for every woman who wants to start her own business to say the same thing, so here I am, mentoring millennial entrepreneurs. When I’m not working, I like to recharge and head outdoors to hike, bike, or stand up paddle board!

Is that list of business news and trending articles you’ve tagged still unread? I get it. Allow me to help. Take a couple minutes to read my summary of articles serving the most pertinent, actionable business topics. Or, take 10 minutes to read the full article, and put another brick on the foundation of your growing career.

This Week’s Must-Read:

Great Managers Are Also Good Teachers

Who it’s for:

Anyone who manages a team, or aspires to manage a team.

Why it’s important:

As managers, we wear many hats: delegator, leader, disciplinarian, decision maker, facilitator and role model. Great managers are also teachers, providing instruction and insight on myriad skills: job specific skills, leadership skills, interpersonal skills, career advancement, and even navigating company politics. Incorporating teaching into your management style will generate big wins for your company, your staff, and you personally.

Growing the skills of your staff is a triple win for the company. First, improving staff skills can enhance company morale, boost productivity, increase quality and reduce employee attrition. Second, as your staff becomes more highly skilled, they increase the company’s bench strength as new projects arise. Third, the more you learn by teaching, the more valuable you become to the company.

When your staff grow their job skills and gain insight into career advancement, they are more fulfilled, passionate and marketable for promotion.

Dedicating the time to be a quality teacher is powerful for you as well. You will strengthen your knowledge, as having to teach a subject or process makes you break down tasks into steps to create understanding. This decomposition of a process allows you to gain a deeper understanding. Teaching also builds staff loyalty for you. Your willingness to spend time and share your knowledge not only increases department efficiency, but it also builds respect and loyalty. Dedicating time to teaching also enhances your management reputation, setting you up for promotion into greater leadership roles.

Now that you’ve bought into the benefits of being a teacher, how do you tackle this additional skill effectively? Here are a set of tips for becoming a quality teacher to your subordinates:

  1. Constructive Criticism. You should provide helpful advice when something is being done incorrectly.
  2. Learning Moments. A learning moment is when you recognize trouble performing a task and you provide education and a stronger understanding for improving performance.
  3. On-the-Job Training. When assigning a new task, don’t give quick instruction and leave them to forage on their own. Take the time to explain the why behind the method, the importance, and appropriate detail that will increase success in performance.
  4. Cross Train. This is a great method for simultaneous training that increases the technical flexibility of your staff.
  5. Advocate for Formal Training. We can’t teach our staff everything they need to know. Advocating for eLearning and formal classes within your company that will strengthen the commitment to ongoing learning.

Top Take-Away:

Incorporating teaching into your core management responsibilities creates wins and success at the highest levels. It’s hard work, and it requires long-term dedication. If it were easy, everyone would be doing it. But I guarantee it is a better way to work!

More on the benefits of managing by teaching:

The Best Leaders Are Great Teachers

Want to Become a Great Leader? Become a Great Teacher.

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