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a blog by Chris Barrow

Strong and weak managers - how to spot the difference

Managers have to demonstrate the attributes of three characters:

  • Sergeant Major

  • Ward Matron

  • Mother Superior

However, many of the problems that arise in teams and in businesses, do so because the manager has the proportions of time they spend "in each character" wrong.

Too many managers seek to avoid confrontation, be popular and seek team happiness at any cost to the business and its owners. They like being the Mother Superior.

Most managers know what it takes to be effective and efficient. The Ward Matron.

(However, beware of the difference between that and "box ticking" for job preservation - a habit they can develop in corporate dentistry.)

Not enough managers demand compliance, hold team members to account, take no sh*t, enforce systems, processes and brand standards of performance and behaviour. Not enough managers don't need to be popular. There are not enough Sergeant Majors around.

The attached PDF spells out the proportions on display when I meet strong and weak managers.

Take a moment to review your existing management team.

Take note when you are hiring.

A weak manager will ruin your plans.

What characteristics make for strong (and weak) managers
Download PDF • 1.58MB

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