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Apply these principles to your day-to-day management for a happy and engaged team

As a manager, you are responsible for creating the work environment, and setting the tone for your employees. Teams are a reflection of their management, and their engagement depends on the quality of their leader.

If your team is in need of a boost, there are some simple principles you can apply to your day-to-day management which will help build a happy, and effective workforce.

1. Weekly goal setting

Start the week as you mean to go on, and help your team get into a positive mindset.  Teams work together more effectively when they have a challenging goal that they’re all committed to.

Goals need to be clearly defined, so everyone knows what they are meant to be doing. Make them demanding goals too – it helps to motivate. Just make sure that they are achievable!

A good way to start your Monday morning is to gather your team to talk through the goals. If you can’t meet face to face, try a Skype call. Start things off with a friendly tone – it’s good practice to ask people how their weekend was, and it sets the tone for your informal meeting. You might find it helpful to ask people the highlight of their last week at work, and see if they need any help or support for the coming week. Remember you want to build a bond within your team, so take an interest in their daily lives, and what they’re looking forward to as well.

2. An open door policy

If you don’t already embrace an open door policy, start today. If you want to improve your accessibility as a manager, tell your team, that no matter how busy you are, you are always available to listen – and keep that door open! People will feel more comfortable approaching you, and you’ll be surprised at the difference it can make. You’ll keep pace with things as they happen, rather than hearing about issues much later, and you’ll build closer working relationships with your team.

It all helps towards a positive environment, with mutual respect, and when your team see your support, they’ll become more engaged and productive.

3. Step away from that comfort zone

It’s called a comfort zone for good reason - you’re relaxed and in control. But stepping outside of it can cause people to feel stressed and uneasy. The opportunities are worth it though, and can lead to rewards or even promotions. So make a point to encourage and challenge your team. You can support them with advice and ideas if they have doubts, or are unsure how to handle a situation. Think about your early career and share experiences of when you stepped out of your comfort zone, how you did it, and what you achieved. You have the ability to inspire your team, so offer to champion them every step of the way.

4. Embrace change

Whether someone is leaving the team, or wider company issues are bringing about change, your team will look to you to guide them through it. It’s important to focus on the positives, and help your team members do the same. Big changes at work can change team dynamics, or even the company culture, and this affects each person differently.

Keep an open mind and use this opportunity to listen to your team. Aim to get a real understanding how the change affects each employee, and what individual support they need before, during and after the transition.

If you want to boost the overall morale of your team, you’ve got to get to the bottom of their worries and issues before you can create a plan to keep them engaged. Once you’ve developed a robust plan you can support your team every step of the way.

Engaged teams perform at their best with effective management. Colleagues like to feel valued, supported and rewarded, so working on your management skills will help you create a highly engaged and high performing team.

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