Whether it involves managing 10 staff members or 50, being a business manager is not an easy task. As a manager, you don’t want to be guessing or hoping for the best results — you have certain responsibilities and goals that you (and the business) need to reach, and good management skills will help you guide your team towards achieving those goals.

To be a successful business manager, there are a few important things you need to know about good management skills and how to get the most out of your employees.

Here are 5 of the things you need to know:

1. You need to cultivate your team

As a manager, you are responsible for supervising your staff members, measuring their performance, and enabling them to contribute to the achievement of the overall business goals. Even though you have to remember that each person is an individual, you also have to make sure that your staff members are able to work together as a team. To do this, you need to guide them and mould them in such a way that it cultivates a culture of cohesion and of working together as a team.

2. You need to listen to your team

As a manager, employee satisfaction should be a priority to you. Not only because your employees (and their behaviour) are representatives of your business, but because their levels of satisfaction at work are a major factor when it comes to their performance levels. And unless you take the time to listen to them, you will have a hard time knowing whether or not your employees are satisfied at work.

As a manager, you want your employees to feel comfortable enough to approach you with their opinions and concerns — even if their opinions differ from your own. Showing that you are truly willing to listen will help to establish trust between you and your employees.

3. You need to empower every individual

While team work is important, you also need to get to know the strengths and weaknesses of every individual in the team. This way, you can make sure that everyone is given the opportunity to maximise their strengths and to improve on their weaknesses. You can also make sure that you allocate tasks in such a way that you are making optimal use of every team member’s skills and strengths.

4. You shouldn’t try to be everyone’s friend

It’s good for managers to be friendly towards their employees, to care about their well-being, and to want what’s best for them — this encourages productivity, after all.  But there is a distinction between caring as a manager and caring as a friend.

If you become too friendly with your employees, it could make it easier for them to take advantage of you, and to expect you to go easy on them when they underperform, come late for work, or are negligent in performing certain tasks.

5. You shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help or advice

Being a manager is not an easy job. It is a complex role, with many new challenges and a wide range of responsibilities. Therefore, it is only natural that you should need help or advice from time to time, and you shouldn’t be afraid to ask for it when you need it.

There are many sources that you can turn to for help, including not only the internet and industry publications, but also industry professionals, your own manager, and your colleagues.

If you want to learn more about how to be a successful business manager, you can always study a part-time course in Business Management. Click here to get started!

Originally posted on June 24, 2015.