Manager’s Effectiveness in Influencing Productivity

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Introduction

The greatest asset that a company or an organization can have is people. People are important assets in companies because they are the instruments used in mobilizing factors of production in order to realize profits. The well-being of an organization is critically dependent on the people be it the employees or even the customers. The employees keep an organization running on a day-to-day basis while consumers utilize the products made hence making the relevant organization.

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Without peoples’ businesses and organizations cannot be functional therefore it is critical to devise ways to get the best out of them. This essay will be discussing various ways that can be used to ensure that employees give their best in an organization. The essay will explore functions and roles played by managers and scrutinize their effectiveness in influencing productivity. The paper seeks to argue that people are the most important assets in an organization as well as give recommendations on how to manage human resources to influence maximum benefits.

Roles of managers

Llopis, (2012) asserts that managers have a critical role to play in an organization. He recognizes that the current rules of managers are constantly and rapidly evolving hence flexibility is of paramount importance. Managers are responsible for driving their workers to keep a high level of performance for the benefit and growth of the company. This responsibility is always met with enormous challenges and instilling a high-performance mindset in the employees can be quite a heavy task. Nonetheless, managers are trained and expected to have the skills to formulate strategies that can help realize the goals of the company.

Managers are charged with the responsibility to create a culture founded on promoting teamwork and healthy competition among the workers for the growth of the company. Every organizational success is directly influenced by the role played by the management. Therefore, managers must stay actively involved in the day-to-day activities of the organization and have a strong influence on both the external and internal environments. On a personal level, managers must strive to earn trust from their colleagues in order to be effective in their leadership (Llopis, 2012).

With the trust of other workers, managers can inspire team unity and enhance collaboration among the workers. These further boosts loyalty among workers and improves communication from the top leadership to the lowest position in the organization’s chain of command. Enhanced communication increases the level of transparency and openness which is a fundamental aspect of an organization. Managers are responsible for influencing all these aspects of management to encourage and realize growth in both the organization and the workers as well.

How to manage people

With reference to Karen Fishler’s ‘Ten Tips for Managing People Well’, there are a number of things that managers can do in order to manage their employees better. Fishler (2013) argues that managing people is a different task from a manager’s core technical skills. Therefore, managing people involve deliberate efforts to acquire leadership skills. Managers who are professionals in other professions should at least attend leadership seminars and take leadership classes to improve their engagement and interaction with other colleagues.

This will not only benefit the workers and improve the working conditions, but it will also improve the manager’s individual life skills. To be a better manager of people, one must realize that in his or her capacity as a manager he or she is required to make decisions and take responsibility for his or her actions. In order to be in a position to make good judgments and better decisions, one has to be very well informed. Therefore, for managers to be able to manage people in a better and more effective way, information and constant learning should be part of their life.

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Besides, this is quite inevitable considering the changing world that we are living in today. To effectively be ahead in business, flexibility is a core factor in effective management. A flexible leader is more likely to provide better leadership compared to a conservative one. The distance from which a manager discharges his or her managerial duties is critical. For instance, micromanagers do not perform very well due to the proximity between the leadership and the workers. This lowers trust and kills the employees’ motivation (Fishler, 2013).

On the other hand, absentee managers according to Fishler (2013) are not close enough to offer guidance and immediate answers to arise and urgent questions. They are not able to keep track of the working progress in the organization. The ideal distance is in between these two where the manager is not too far away or too close to their subordinates. In managing people, making their careers a priority can go a very long way in influencing growth in the entire organization. Fishler (2013) argues that the better your employees become, the better you look.

By supporting employees’ growth, the value of the organization is improved and performance is taken to a better and higher level. Managers can improve their management of people by assigning the workers projects that will help them grow and enhance their talents and skills. Being an effective leader requires psychological skills. In order to be able to manage people effectively, a leader must always acknowledge employees’ efforts and make it a routine. Through acknowledgment, people feel appreciated and are motivated to continue doing good to maintain the standard of performance and even take it higher.

Without acknowledgment, employees will never know when they are doing the right thing and this can be demoralizing. When dealing with people, one needs to have a strategic plan for dealing with problems. A good plan contains three aspects which are coaching, counseling, and disciplining. If a leader notices a problem she should first engage in a mutual agreement and encouragement of positive behaviors through coaching, and then counsel the individual with specific requests for change (Fishler, 2013).

If the problem persists, then disciplinary measures can be administered. The seventh step involves documenting your work and keeping records that can be a reference point for every action taken. Managers are responsible for their actions hence keeping records is in their best interest. This serves in the protection of both the company and the managers as well in case of a dispute. Effective, managers work with agreements with their workers. It is not possible for workers to support all of their decisions but a manager expects the workers to abide by the decisions of the company. Communication from the top must be effective for better management of workers and managers should be objective and emotionally disciplined at all times.

Motivation

Achieving an effective workforce can be a challenging task for managers. Nonetheless, in order to get the best out of the workers, there are factors that must be considered. Motivation is a strategy known to influence and change workers’ attitudes towards their job. A change of attitude can fundamentally have far-reaching impacts on the performance of the workers (Turner, 2009, p. 90). Employees’ efforts are influenced by managerial factors hence the responsibility is squarely laid on managers. Managers are in a unique position to influence high performance in workers through different avenues (Turner, 2009, p. 90).

One of the greatest ways to enhance workers’ performance is by increasing their motivational levels. Motivation can highly be boosted through aby the workers’ economic benefits with the performance of the company (Cooper et al. 2012, p. 35). When workers see that their hard work and high performance are adding value to their economic benefits, they will be further motivated to work even harder. Workers are motivated when their efforts are acknowledged with financial rewards. As discussed earlier, taking a keen interest in the worker’s career development work in motivating them hence increase in the level of performance.

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On-job-learning programs may go a long way in boosting worker morale. Another way to boost their morale is through taking a keen interest in their welfare especially work-life balance (Cooper et al. 2012, p. 35). This includes offering workers time off, understanding family commitments, and listening to complaints (Ford, 2005, p. 67). Managers who show understanding of workers’ personal issues are better plareed to motivate workers than the one who does not show concern for the workers’ personal life. Listening to your employees is a very important aspect that can improve the level of motivation in an organization.

A working environment where employees can contribute towards the activities that take place on a daily basis is more likely to motivate workers. Listen allows the workers to raise their complaints, solve conflicts among other issues. Addressing employees’ grievances boost their morale hence motivating them to work more efficiently. Lastly, managers can influence motivation simply by being respectful to their subordinates (Ford, 2005, p. 67).

Introducing and managing change

Introducing and managing change in an organization is a challenge for managers. Psychologically, humans are naturally resistant to change. In an organization where people have worked and lived with certain beliefs and perceptions, it becomes almost impossible to introduce new ways of doing things. However, it is very crucial for a manager to identify the areas that require immediate changes based on their professional judgment and it is within their mandate to make the necessary adjustment.

Acknowledging their power, managers must display restraint in executing some new policies and find ways to introduce the changes in an amicable way to avert resistance from workers. In people management, the display of authority is sometimes offensive and can prompt rebellion (Gann, N 1996). In order to impact changes in an organization, a group, or any other social setting, it is imperative to establish the changes that impact the group. After identifying the changes, the next step involves understanding the changes and ensuring that all the parties involved have also understood these changes (Hannagan, 2005, p. 46).

The next step will be identifying how the changes will impact the team and how the team will respond to these impacts in return. After identifying the above, then each member of the group can identify their role in the change process (Harrison, Benjamin, Curran, & Hunter, 2007, p. 70). Leaders use this strategy in bringing new changes to a group of people. Identifying each member’s role helps to make the change a personal activity by including the workers. Introducing dictatorial changes may be met with strong opposition even when the changes are for the good of the collective group (Kirton, & Greene, 2004, p. 65).

Leaders are better placed to effect change if they first make it a priority to identify the areas of resistance among their subordinates. This may be achieved through a question and answer session where members of the group or employees in the case of an organization can raise their concerns and objections (Hawkins, & Shohet, 2007, p. 98). Identifying the point of resistance helps the leader/manager to explain and convince the workers to support his/her agenda. Through such a forum manager can use the opportunity to convince the workers how important these changes are for the envelopment of the organization.

Here, the manager can create awareness and emphasize the need for change in a particular area. In their explanation, they should address why a change is required, they should weigh the current performance level, and they should announce the objectives or what they intend to achieve with this change. However, changes begin from the top, and for an effective change to be made in an organization, for instance, the managers must adapt to that change first.

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Psychological empowerment

Managing people include dealing with a number of psychological issues that affect their ability to work effectively. People especially the youth issues that they struggle with at a personal level. These issues include private matters as well as social and psychological problems. Private matters include things that a person is going through in their personal life such as family problems, addictions, among other problems. Social and psychological issues are the problems that people face during their normal interactions with each other (Lewthwaite, 2006, p. 122).

Most of the youths are entangled with activities and associations that expose them to psychological problems such as stress. To effectively manage young people, they must be empowered and taught how to manage, prevent, and cope with stress. Stress has been a major challenge among young people and many people in organizations or any other social settings are prone to suffering from the vice (Lipman, 2013). The instances of stress are increasing due to the difficult economic situations that young people are experiencing today.

The world is presenting different and difficult challenges putting economic pressure on young people hence the increased cases of stress (Phillips, 2002, p. 45). Young people are charged with responsibilities to pay their bills, feed themselves, and so forth. With the increased prices of basic needs today, livelihood is becoming almost unbearable especially with the high rate of unemployment among young people. Nonetheless, leaders and people in management positions must always pay attention to stress management (Llopois, 2012).

Stress management programs are one way of empowering young people psychologically and preparing them for the unprecedented future. In stress empowerment, people are encouraged to face life and the challenges it presents with a positive attitude in order to conquer them (Mullins, 2007, p. 167). Bills will not stop accumulating and family responsibilities will always be there (Pritchard, 1995, p. 232). Life is demanding in nature and people must not get worried when life seems like it is falling apart. Instead, young people must rise to the challenge and face their challenges with a positive approach.

The greatest way of dealing with stress is by accepting the fact that life presents challenges to us at all times. When we are young and when we are old, stress is part and parcel of our lives. However, people do not know how much control they have over their lives. That’s why many cases of stress have been rising in the recent past (Pritchard, 1995, p. 232). In order to effectively manage stress, one has to identify the source of stress in their lives. Although it sounds like an easy thing to do, when one gets to actually think about it you realize it is not as easy as it sounds (Pritchard, 1995, p. 232). Nonetheless, it is the beginning of stress management. Stress-inducing thoughts are often overlooked when it comes to personal evaluation. Coping with stress can take different dimensions which present different results.

For instance, some people resort to smoking, taking excessive alcohol, overeating or undereating, watching too much television, withdrawing from their social ties, using relaxing pills among other behaviours (Hawkins, & Shohet, 2007, p. 98). These are ways of coping with stress but the only issue with such behaviours is that they are harmful ways of doing it. In addition to being harmful, they are also not effective in managing stress. The healthier ways of managing stress include avoiding, altering, adapting and accepting the stressor.

The well-being of people in a society, a learning institution, or a business is of great importance. Psychological fitness is very important for any group of people and the benefit of all. With a population of psychologically disturbed or unfit people, the development of society is derailed since people are not fully focused on profitable activities. If a school, it is important to have a conducive environment where students can easily concentrate on their studies. Students must be exposed to minimal interference in order to help them achieve better results. For instance, students should be fed and protected to help their minds to be sober for learning. In the workplace, the less stressed the more productive the employees become.

Managing diversity in an organization

Diversity in any group of people has the potential to destroy or build the group. People are different and different backgrounds influence different points of view (Hawkins, & Shohet, 2007, p. 98). Managers in an organization and leaders in other social settings are charged with the responsibility to harness the benefits of people’s diversity. Diversity brings to a group different talents and abilities that make a group stronger and more effective. In the workplace, different personalities are required. There are people who are artistic and creative by nature (Hawkins, & Shohet, 2007, p. 98).

These types of people are useful in the marketing department and other areas that demand such skills. Other people are very good at team building and leadership and these too can be very useful in heading the different departments (Hawkins, & Shohet, 2007, p. 98). In addition to that, different personalities make life interesting. In a group of young people, there are those who are noisy and very talkative while others are reserved and quiet. Some people are always in happy moods while others are melancholic by nature. All these personalities are quite crucial in a group of young people. Institutions of learning are more likely to deal with managing diversity since they accommodate students from different countries, regions, family backgrounds, and different religious inclinations.

Diversity increases the variety of solutions to problems faced by a group of people. People from different backgrounds offer different and unique talents and experiences to the group hence diversifying the group’s ability to withstand the changing wave of challenges. Diverse influences a broad range of skills and cultural exposure which enables people to learn from each other hence influencing globalization (Kirton, & Greene, 2004, p. 65). To manage diversity, leaders must make deliberate efforts to formulate policies that incorporate diversity in all dimensions.

In an organization, the leadership must be keen to support and promote diversity by fostering a culture of openness and transparency. Diversity in the workplace is a major advantage but only when harnessed and utilized correctly. Otherwise, it can breed major conflicts that can hamper the performance of the company in a very detrimental way. The same is true for learning institutions and social organizations. In a group of people, there must be an occurrence of diversity due to the different personalities of human beings. Learning and appreciating each other is a fundamental aspect that’s seeking to promote our diversity and use it to our advantage.

Cultivating organizational behaviour

Organisational behaviours are norms and values that are characteristic and unique to an organization. These are the unique ways of doing things in different organizations. Learning institutions, youth groups, and business organization must have a culture that governs them as a family (Kirton, & Greene, 2004, p. 65). This also serves as a way of harmonizing different personalities and diversity. Organizational culture helps a group of people with different views to have a common view and interact freely with mutual understanding.

This however differs from one group of people to the other depending on the different leaders. In forming organizational behaviour, it is critical to consider the inclusion and participation of the rest of the people and consider their views on particular issues. This helps in averting change resistance among employees in businesses and youths in schools. Positive organizational behaviour influences better performance in every department. Other than influencing great performance, organizational culture gives the group or business an identity that makes it easier for new members to join in and feel part of the family.

On a broader scale, it enhances loyalty and increases the level of belonging to the team. When people identify with a company, it is easier for them to own the vision and goals of the company and work towards achieving them. Creating a sense of belonging to the company in workers is effective and a sure way of gaining trust from the workers. In youth groups and society, people feel more comfortable when they have a sense of belonging to the team. A sense of belonging as discussed earlier is effectively influenced through good organizational cultures.

Conclusion

This paper critically discusses the different aspects of managing people with an intention of getting the best out of them (Kirton, & Greene, 2004, p. 65). The paper outlines the different roles that managers of people are expected to play using the business environment as a basis to show how leadership and human management can be done effectively. The paper gives an in-depth insight on how to manage people giving examples of what to do and what not to do with respect to human management. Motivation has been identified as a way that managers can use to influence productivity among their workers. The same strategy can be used in other settings such as learning institutions as well as in communities.

Introducing and managing change in an organization, a group of young people, or the society, leaders must be careful to pay attention to diversity. Tolerance and the culture of inclusion is better way to go about influencing change to avert resistance. The paper has also discussed some psychological empowerment strategies that are crucial to the well-being of an organization. As discussed in the paper, the creation of an effective organizational culture and managing diversity are crucial strategies that contribute greatly to getting the best out of people.

References

Cooper, S. et al. 2012, “Rebalancing Supervision”, in Ord, J. (Ed) Critical Issues in Youth Work Management, Routledge, Oxon.

Fishler, K. 2O13, Ten tips for managing people well. 2013, Web.

Ford, K 2005, Leading and Managing Youth Work, and Services for Young People, The National Youth Agency, Leicester.

Gann, N 1996, Managing Change in Voluntary Organisations. A Guide to Practice. Open University press, Buckingham.

Hannagan, T 2005, Management. Concepts and Practices (4th ed), Prentice Hall, Essex.

Harrison, R., Benjamin, C., Curran, S., and Hunter, R 2007, Leading Work with Young people, Sage Publications. London.

Hawkins, P. And Shohet, R 2007, Supervision in Helping Professions (3rd Ed), Open University Press, Berkshire.

Kirton, G. and Greene, A 2004, Dynamics of Managing Diversity (2nd ed), Butterworth Heinemann, Oxford.

Lewthwaite, J 2006, Managing People for the First Time: Gaining Commitment and Improving Performance, Thorogood, London.

Lipman, V. 2013, 5 Easy Ways To Motivate – And Demotivate – Employees, Web.

Mullins, L. 2007, Management and Organisational Behavior, Pearson Education, United Kingdom.

Llopois, G. 2012, Effective roles of managers, Web.

Phillips, A 2002, Assertiveness and the Manager’s Job, Radcliffe Medical Press, Oxon.

Pritchard, J 1995, Good Practice in Supervision: Statutory and Voluntary Organization, Jessica Kingsley, London.

Turner, S 2009, “Flexibility, the psychological contract and empowerment”, in Rayner, C., and Adam-Smith, D. (Eds) Managing, and Leading People, (2nd ed), CIPD, London.

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BusinessEssay. "Manager’s Effectiveness in Influencing Productivity." December 28, 2021. https://business-essay.com/managers-effectiveness-in-influencing-productivity/.