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People Management Skills

People Management Skills

People Management Skills

People management skills (sometimes called man management) are important because some of the people in your organisation will need careful managing if they are to produce their best work. And, as you may have observed, managing people is not always an easy task.

Proper man management training can be defined as:

"Learning a set of personal skills that combine to allow you to inspire the best, most productive effort from every member of the team".

Learning people management skills involves, training to improve your abilities in the following areas:

  1. Handling difficult people
  2. Resolving conflict within the team
  3. Organising work
  4. Creating and sustaining a positive mental attitude.

Let us look at each one in turn:

1. Handling difficult people

Psychologist Carl Jung tells us there are at least eight main personality types: Many of them are difficult to deal with: For example, you may know people who are:

  • Cynical
  • Pessimistic
  • Argumentative
  • Cynical, pessimistic AND argumentative!

There is only one way to deal with people like that. It is according to the principles of reason.
You must treat people, especially difficult ones, according to the principles of reason.

And THAT means logically, which means:

  • According to the facts, not your feelings
  • According to the facts, not your opinions
  • According to the facts, not your mood, or your prejudices or personal whims.

Everyone must be treated reasonably, according to the rules of logic, irrespective of how difficult they are, and that is a specific skill that needs to be learned.

2. Resolving conflict within the team

Conflict can occur between members of the team.

People management skills include:
'Being able to remain impartial and find working compromises between two warring factions within the team'.

Teams can only function where harmony exists between its members. Disunity can fracture the working relationships and render the team useless. So managers must learn the skills of:

  • Compromise - Finding an acceptable middle ground between two extremes.
  • Negotiation and arbitration - Finding what are the negotiable variables that exist in any situation of conflict.
  • Managing the emotions of others - By careful and intelligent use of language, voice tone and body language.

3. Organising work

All the members of a team must work in an intelligent and integrated fashion, so that their joint effort is co-ordinated to achieve their joint targets.

That means the manager must be able to:

  • Prioritise
  • Delegate
  • Make good decisions
  • Plan ahead

Failure to do so properly will mean that each member of the team will create their own individual 'to do list' and the co-ordinate team function will splinter.

People Management Skills Summary

People management contains the four skills of: Prioritisation, planning, delegation and decision making. Each one is a study in itself:

  • Prioritisation: Judging tasks according to utility and deadline pressure.
  • Planning: organising resources in the best way that will allow for the achievement of the goal.
  • Delegation: assigning the right task to the best person.
  • Decision making: Picking the best option from many options, and having the courage to act on the decision, once it is made.

Failure to do any one of these skills properly will weaken the overall performance of the team.

We teach all of the above skills on our two-day People Management Skills training course.

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