What Ails Most Management in the USA?

Management in America today faces intense global competition and poor management skills and development are at the heart of our troubles.  This affects companies and the success of managers.

This may be the most important reference on the issues with American management that I have ever seen. It appeared on Tickld.com and this parody hits you right in the head…

“They advised that too many people were steering the boat, while not enough people were rowing.” Read this fabulous paridy on american management here >> American Management

Team at work cooperating

Photo pixels.com Source startupstockphotos.com / CCO

See if you can identify with this..,

Why Some Teams Are Smarter than Others: “ENDLESS meetings that do little but waste everyone’s time. Dysfunctional committees that take two steps back for every one forward. Project teams that engage in wishful group thinking rather than honest analysis. Everyone who is part of an organization — a company, a nonprofit, a condo board — has experienced these and other pathologies that can occur when human beings try to work together in groups.” Continue reading the main story




3 Keys to Building the Best Business Teams

In the NY Times article above, research into what factors exist in the best teams , there were three important fundamentals

  1. Team members had equal opportunities to engage in the team’s communications.
  2. The ability of team members to perceive other members “emotional states” by ascertaining the non-verbal signals.
  3. Team’s with a larger number of women seem to out-perform others.

Team Communication Skills for Managers

management communication skills

Communication Idea

In the NY Times article above, the somewhat scientific take on the concept of engaging in team communication is referred to as “Theory of Mind.”  From a managers point of view, this implies developing the skill of having laser focus and concentration when communicating with members of the team.  This falls into 3 categories of management awareness:

  1.  Perceiving how someone is “feeling” during the communication exchange. For example, being aware if the employee is showing stress, distraction, fear, excitement, etc.
  2.  Understanding the skills and knowledge level of the person communication so that the manager has a good grasp of “what this person knows” in the context of the subject discussed.
  3.  Understanding if the team members belief system or philosophy of life or work is playing into the discussion.

Non-Verbal Communication Skills in Team Building and Management

The importance of non-verbal skills in effective communication have been documented and developed for years.  That said, in the context of managing a team and building a cohesive team, this can not be over-stated.The basic tenants of what is involved in non-verbal communications includes the following two major categories:

  • Body Language – perhaps the easiest to discern during a communication exchange,  body language can be described as; facial expression or reactions, a person’s posture when sitting or standing, degree of eye contact, spacial distance (as established by the person being observed).
  • Voice – people have a general style, volume and tenor for their voice in normal, non-stress or excitement situations,  Managers who want to build on their skills for non-verbals will need to look for changes from a person’s norm for communication.  This could include speaking volumes lower or higher than usual, excitement, anxiety or stress in their voice.

The non-verbal aspects of communication within a high-performance team are of real importance to the manager and too all members of the team.  You can learn more here >>>Help Guide.Org – Non-Verbal Communications

Team Effectiveness and the Female Factor

The facts are that many teams will perform better with talented and engaged women in the group.  While it is hard to make sweeping generalities, the inter-personal skill level of many women in the work place can make a difference.  Certainly, you want your team to be divirsified around their core responsibilities and skill requirements but integrating women on a team can be a productivity booster.

Some of the studies have found that women may be better at reading the non-verbal communications than men.  They have a certain level of intuition that can pick-up on important communication queues during a discussion.

In a really edifying article on the Huffington Post, this concept is revealed further…

“The studies in the book found that when women and men ranked each other and themselves against 21st Century leadership attitudes and characteristics, women ranked women high on all 10, but men did not necessarily rank men higher. When evaluated from a generational viewpoint the researchers found that generation X and Y (under age 50) were gender agnostic leaving the population that potentially perceives gender leadership differences to a segment of boomer men. When the researchers analyzed the perceptions from this segment, the results suggested that women are people-oriented while men are risk takers.”

Read more here>> Women Lead and Show the Way

If  you are glossing over the women on the team issue, look at these statistics.  Data from American Progress.Org shows the following:

“60% of undergraduate and masters degrees are earned by women. They make up almost 60% if the entry level employees with college degrees. Inspite of this, and the fact that women are in over 50% of the ‘professional level jobs’, they have gained only only 14% of executive management positions and a paltry 4.6% of the top incomes of CEO’s in Fortune 500 companies.”

Managers need to re-evaluate how effectively they are recruiting and integrating talented women to their business units.

Improve Team Building and Improve Management Results

Almost all managers at whatever level will be managing a group of employees and teams.  It is the business unit team that will make or break productivity gains and unit performance. Team building has many levels  including recruiting, training, project management, skills and knowledge and communications.  So much of successful management can be developed when it comes to people skills.

There was a saying I developed some years back that resonates consistently in management development,

“The person who does not read is a prisoner of their own experience. The person who does not gain in experience struggles to learn how to integrate their knowledge.” Michael D. Moore

I found this graphic on Buffer which describes this concept to a tee.


management skills

From Buffer By “The difference between knowledge and experience in one image.” / /Also buff.ly/1eJxWsf

Do you want to boost your management skills and team building and really accelerate productivity?  If so, seriously start a management skills development program to include skills and knowledge that involve these areas:

  • Build a high-performance team culture
  • Improve your interpersonal skills
  • Make open and frequent communications and idea exchanges a top priority
  • Generate “team building” skills for every member of the business unit.
  • Learn how to recruit and build diversity on your team
  • Create goals and learn all you can about each team members personal and professional goals
  • Constantly discuss the team mission to build a commonly held, and understood, vision for the team.
  • Walk the Talk!
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Michael D. Moore is the publisher of Management By Delegation and is a veteran executive with 40+ years in the Banking and Insurance Industries. A devoted entrepreneur, using his business experience to provide resources for managers and leaders at all levels. For the last 5 years, he has built a growing web presence for helping people with personal and professional development. To learn more about these advanced concepts & join our group Click here 5 Must Have Management Skills

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