Using meta-analysis of interviews with over 80,000 managers, the authors have distilled the essence of what differentiates a great manager from an average manager to six salient questions.
"The most powerful questions are those with a combination of the strongest links to the most business outcomes. Armed with this perspective, we now know that the following six are the most powerful questions:
- Do I know what is expected of me at work?
- Do I have the materials and equipment I need to do my work right?
- Do I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day?
- In the last seven days, have I received recognition or praise for my good work?
- Does my supervisor, or someone at work, seem to care about me as a person?
- Is there someone at work who encourages my development?"
As you think about this list, how do you stack up as a manager? How does your current supervisor rate? The authors follow up with the statement that a person's immediate supervisor is a more significant indicator of employee performance and retention than company-wide initiatives or culture.
This book does a terrific job of highlighting the major differences between what it means to be a leader and a manager:
"The most important difference between a great manager and a great leader is one of focus. Great managers look inward. They look inside the company, into each individual, into differences in style, goals, needs and motivation of each person. These differences are small, subtle, but great managers need to pay attention to them. These subtle differences guide them to the right way to release each person's unique talents and performance." (Page 63)
4 Keys to Success
The authors have reduced the art of great management down to 4 keys:
- Select for Talent
- Define the Right Outcomes
- Focus on Strengths
- Fit the Right fit
This book is useful to professionals who are currently operating in the role of a manager. It is also valuable to each woman or man who is in the midst of figuring out how to get the most out of the resource of their current manager - or to consider leaving to find a manager who "gets it."