Gallup survey found that manager accounts for 70 percent of variance in employee engagement across business units. It means that managers play key role when it comes to retaining key performers in the industry. However, according to Gallup, one in two respondents had left their job to get away from their manager. Among the most common reasons of their leaving was because they felt disengaged and their manager did not do anything about it.
Gallup also cited that employee engagement lies greater in “who the manager is”. When managers are prone to be negative, employees will feel the same and company will likely to get higher turnover. On the other hand, when managers are supportive and positive, employees will perform their best and give greater value in engagement, resulting in lower turnover. However, more than a supportive leader, according to a survey from HBR, there are four other types of managers employees want to collaborate with.
Connector managers are those who love to guide their team members and connect them to others who can help. They are also expert at giving feedback in their areas of expertise. Connectors spend their most time to assess skills, needs, and interest of their employees. They also recognise that skills are best taught by experts. Therefore, they always connect employees to experts who can help leverage employee’s skills.
According to leadership gurus, James Kouzes and Barry Posner, connector managers encourage others by: replacing feedback with feedforward, challenge employees constructively, presenting different perspectives, insights, and ideas, balancing their behaviour on every aspect manager should have, finding time for one-on-one conversations, building culture of trust and transparency.
Just like a cheerleader, this type of managers will be present in all circumstances that employees have to deal with. They provide supportive feedback and are available when needed. They give a hands-off approach, positive feedback, as well as put employee in charge of their own development. While cheerleader managers might not as proactive as other types of managers when it comes to developing skills, their positive attitude and supportive feedback are loved by employees.
Patrick Fiorenza wrote, “Sometimes we just need a cheerleader, someone who will listen and has a way of showing empathy to us.” That’s why, this type of manager usually masters reflective listening and understand perspective to help others. There are other two important things that can differentiate cheerleader manager from others: dignity and fairness. These two items are most valued by employees in workplace, Fiorenza added.
Teacher managers are usually those who have spent years as individual contributor before working in managerial roles. They also hold an expertise in technical field skills. Teacher managers are also called coach as they provide advice-oriented feedback and personally directing development. They use their knowledge and experience to help others.
Coach managers are admirable and someone to look up to, said Fiorenza, as teacher managers are able to show big pictures for teams. They are also available to help employee on new complex perspective issue and help them navigate and solve the problems.
Providing continual coaching, always-on managers are those who always stay on top of employees’ development and give feedback across as ranger of skills. According to HBR, always-on managers appear to be the most dedicated of four other types to upgrade employee’s skills. Developing skills of employees becomes top of priority of always-on managers.
Paul Glover, author of WorkQuake, stated that the most important manager’s role is to influence and motivate employees to give their best. Thus, this act can be found in always-on manager. “Managers and supervisors must do a work persona and intentionally use their skills to play part of effective coaches.” But building skills requires an always-on stage whenever employees need it.
Lastly, in the purpose of becoming a good manager that employees want to follow, learning to be one of the above types can be a good way to start. However, if your aim is to be a great manager where employees are happy working with you, you should combine each type of managerial behaviours.