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While the jury is still out on the question of management being an art or science, the spotlight is clearly on the manager as organizations face rapid changes in fluid economic conditions. Often, the path from ‘individual contributor’ to effective manager can be difficult, and the following skills are considered essential to managerial success.
Strategic orientation: Understanding the strategic context of the organization and aligning the team or unit to this is critical. The ability to see the ‘big picture’ and conceptualize and present a clear vision or roadmap is an essential skill. This ensures all members in the team understand the impact, importance and alignment of their roles both vertically as well as laterally within the organization.
People skills: Understanding and embracing diversity in a team is essential to success. Identifying different personality types as well as diverse skills and allocating tasks accordingly will enhance overall productivity. Apart from clear goals, the ability to coach and mentor the team both individually and in small groups is key to motivation and performance enhancement.
Managing complexity: Every manager must have the ability to multi-task and manage a complex business environment. An awareness of governance, regulatory and market frameworks that often transcend geographical boundaries and involve new technology, complicated supply chains and multi-product platforms is an important skill often honed by experience and diverse experiences.
Analytics: The use of data and the ability to leverage software and analytics as diagnostic tools, and make informed and strategic conclusions and decisions is often underrated but increasingly vital to managerial success in a tech-savvy world.
Planning and organizing: From the simple concept of time management to business planning with clear measures and metrics, this remains an evergreen skill.
• Growing from ‘individual contributor’ to manager can be difficult
• Critical personal values include integrity, empathy, clarity of vision
• A manager must act as as leader, innovator and agent of change
Source: Monindra Grover, Special to Jobs & Careers
The writer is Regional HR Leader - Middle East & North Africa, MARSH