5 Behaviours Managers Should Imbibe to Manage the Modern Workforce

Amy, a millennial, was elated when she got promoted to the position of manager. She was ready to take on the challenge of leading a team and bringing out the best in them. As she stepped into the role, she wondered: could she really make a difference? She was ambivalent about how she would be able to lead a team of five – some of them older than her. Modern workplaces are witnessing a shift as more millennials are stepping into managerial roles.

Organisations are witnessing 4 generations working simultaneously in their ecosystem: Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials and Gen-Z. This brings a diverse set of expectations, communication styles, goals and motivators for different generations which makes it harder for new managers to manage them. It is hard for managers if they can’t relate to someone because of differences in age, perspectives, and values. To realise the benefits of a multi-generational workforce, managers need to learn to collaborate and appreciate each individuals’ unique preferences, habits, and behaviours. But how can one imbibe those behaviours ? We deep dive and discuss a few essential behaviours managers can learn to help lead their teams successfully :

1. Holistic Responsibility :

Becoming a successful manager starts with holding yourself responsible for your actions, understanding the consequences if you fail to meet them and amending the mistakes. This sets an example for your team to take responsibility for their own actions and establishes clarity of purpose in them. Further, managers need to expand their horizons and not just take responsibility for their own actions but those who report to them. It doesn’t mean covering your team’s mishaps but rather making them aware of their own responsibilities.

This way managers can set the bar high and set clear expectations from their team members. Taking ownership also elevates the trust between managers and their team members, showing integrity and consistency. So, start by taking responsibility if something goes wrong and have the courage to learn from your mistakes and improve yourself. Creating a culture of accountability takes time and effort, but it’s well worth in the long run

2. Being a Facilitator :

In today’s remote workplace, managers need to act as a bridge amongst their remote team members and the organisation to manage them effectively. They not only have to lead their team to success but also empower their teams to attain their personal success. Being a facilitator means wearing too many hats. One is not just a manager to their team but also their leader, trainer, mentor, and friend.

So, rather than getting the work done, managers must enable them to be part of the decision-making process. This means turning boring meetings into brainstorming sessions where employees contribute towards achieving team goals and organisational goals as a whole. Managers must take inspiration from those around them who have played the role aptly and those who are a vital cog in the process whilst working behind the scenes. A manager who empowers their team to be more effective and focused, often promotes open communication and trust between team members.

3. Balancing Values :

Managing a multi-generational workforce today requires managers to align their values with their team’s values. Your values shape your thought process and guide you in decision making, solving problems, and building relationships. When managers align their values with their team it leads to better communication between them and creates openness to share their challenges. Further, building trust amongst the team as they feel comfortable, heard, and understood.

To align values, managers can start off by setting clear expectations and align ways of working to achieve common goals thereby establishing a foundation for the team members. For instance, if a manager values transparency from his/her team members and the team might expect autonomy from the manager. So, managers need to create a balance and push their values in order to align with the team to properly manage the tasks. With an aligned view of values, team members feel satisfied towards achieving their goals as it meets their underlying principles thereby increasing team cohesion and satisfaction.

4. Balancing Dependency :

Managers might be leading their team members towards disengagement, stress, dissatisfaction, and burnout if they equate managing their team members with controlling them. Managers need to learn to achieve that sweet spot between autonomy and dependency when it comes to managing today’s modern workforce. As a manager, you might feel tempted to give your team members the answer to every problem they have. But then are you giving them the chance to grow as individuals? Instead, managers should balance between giving them the freedom to solve problems on their own while ensuring support throughout the process.

This can start with fostering a culture of open communication amongst team members to build that co-dependency on one another rather than reaching out to managers. Some dependencies might still be there, and managers should know when to step in. This can only be achieved when the team members and managers are transparent with each other.

5. Emotional Stability :

Emotional stability is what separates great managers from good ones. It is the ability to control one’s emotions at all times. It also acts as an example for team members to follow along. Having emotional stability with team members allows managers to solve their problems more quickly as they are more emotionally available. Managers can stabilise their emotions by understanding what triggers them and their team member’s emotions to foster a culture where team members are heard and valued.

This will help them from not taking decisions impulsively as they will be able to regulate their emotions in the right manner. Such managers also have a high awareness of their weaknesses and make constant efforts towards improving them. Managers who are emotionally composed are able to handle team conflicts without escalating the tension. Ultimately, fuelling a positive company culture for their team members.

Managing the modern workforce can be difficult but managers can carve out their way by understanding them and connecting with them. They need to understand that the modern workforce is smarter, faster, and better equipped with tools than they were. In order to foster them, managers need to work on funnelling their creativity to the benefit of the organisation. However, with an agile market in place, they need to demonstrate these behaviours quickly before they are replaced by technology. Thinking about how to develop these behaviours in such a short time?

That’s where we come into the picture. At Naman, facilitators and learning specialists present across the globe help businesses develop their leaders in a holistic manner by carving out customised learning journeys. With blended learning and self-reflection, we help individuals achieve their highest potential through our workshops. Get in touch with us to start your learning journey now:

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