Many leaders become frustrated with mid-level managers because of the perception they’re not doing their jobs adequately. When you really dig into this observation, it’s often because new mid-level managers don’t fully understand what is expected of them.
The leader is responsible for outlining the core elements of what is expected from managers. Here are some guidelines to consider:
Clarify roles and responsibilities. This can be more important than a conventional functional job description. What is the position expected to achieve and what are the key responsibilities for which the position is accountable?
Key performance indicators (KPIs). How will you measure the success of this position? It’s typical to have 3-5 KPIs that are described in detail with the manager.
Development issues. What will it take for the manager to be successful in this role? Does the person need additional skill building or management development to achieve success?
Mentoring. If someone is newly promoted into a managerial position, a mentor may provide support in ways that the leader is unable to provide. Alternatively, it may be appropriate for the new manager to work with an executive coach.
Career management. It’s important for the leader to discuss and understand the manager’s career aspirations. It can affect the types of assignments or the development track that is established.
Importantly, generational issues inform this topic as well. Many Millennials are not interested in working 60+ hours a week, if that is what is expected of them. The topic of work-life balance, in the workplace vernacular for decades now, is especially prominent for this generation.
Header image by Christina@wocintechchat.com/Unsplash.