We’ve already explored whether managers and employees can be friends. Now, let’s take a look at some common myths surrounding manager-employee relationships.
Myth: You Can’t Be a Good Manager if You’re Not an Extrovert
The Truth: Extroverts may get the attention of the room, they may make splashy presentations and convincing pitches, but that doesn’t always mean they’re better managers than introverts.
SEE ALSO: Ultimate Guide to Employee Check-Ins
Introverts can excel at connecting with people one-on-one, and that ability to build meaningful relationships is a vital skill for leaders. Introverts are often more observant and empathetic, which can help them recognize strengths and weaknesses, hone in on problem areas, and sense when an employee is struggling, unhappy, overworked, etc. While they may have different management styles, both introverts and extroverts can be highly effective in leadership roles.
Myth: Managers Don’t Need to Coach High Performers
The Truth: All employees have areas where they can improve. Managers should be focused on helping employees reach their full potential, and constructive feedback and coaching are necessary in order to do so.
Think of the greatest athletes of all time. Every single one of them had coaches. And even at the peak of their careers, they were still practicing every day and working to eliminate weaknesses. The same goes for your best employees.
On the flip side, just because an employee receives a lot of constructive feedback doesn’t mean that they’re a failure—it just means that their manager wants to help them grow. Coaching and feedback are essential tools for professional success.
Myth: You Don’t Need to Keep Track of Check-In Conversations
The Truth: The purpose of regular check-ins is to make coaching and employee development an ongoing process. Without keeping notes and tracking this process in writing, it’s easy to lose momentum and lose sight of your goals. Plus, you’re robbing yourself of valuable information when performance reviews roll around.
While your face shouldn’t be buried in your computer during check-ins, you should jot down notes during and after the meeting. These notes should be accessible to both you and the employee to hold each other accountable and provide a conversation starter during your next check-in.
Myth: Some Managers Are Too Busy to Meet with Employees
The Truth: Ensuring that employees are performing at their highest levels should be the number one priority for managers, and meeting with employees is absolutely necessary in order to bring out the best in your team. Providing effective feedback, coaching, listening to employees’ concerns, and helping employees solve problems all necessitate face-to-face conversations.
If you’re busy, make time. Schedule regular check-in meetings—and stick to them. Don’t cancel or reschedule at the last minute.
If your role forces you to travel a lot, make yourself available via email, instant messaging, and phone calls. Your team should know that you’re ready and able to provide help and guidance whenever needed.
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