How To Manage People Effectively in 6 Steps (Plus Tips)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 3 September 2022 | Published 11 October 2021

Updated 3 September 2022

Published 11 October 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

As a leader in the workplace, managing others is an important ability. It allows you to collaborate and reach goals and complete projects. If you're a leader or want to become one, learning more about how to manage people can be beneficial. In this article, we explain how to manage people in the workplace, detail why effective management is important and provide tips for being a successful leader in your workplace environment.

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How to manage people in the workplace

Leaders in the workplace manage tasks, projects, data and people. Understanding how to be an effective team lead by managing the people in your team can improve your performance and enhance your teamwork. You can follow these steps to learn how to manage people effectively:

1. Manage your own workload first

Before you can manage the success of others, it's best to take care of yourself. Make your own schedule a priority and guard your time, setting aside a block of time each day that you dedicate to completing your own work without interruptions. Once you feel confident in your own work, you can be more attentive and focused on your team when they need you. By demonstrating that you're able to manage your work and time effectively, you may serve as a good example to your team members and gain their respect.

Related: How To Be a Good Manager in the Workplace

2. Create a management system

Identify what role each team member plays in completing a project, and map out the workflow processes you expect to use. Having a clear understanding of each individual role and how it affects the overall project gives you a more informed perspective on what you can expect of each person. It also enables you to craft a reasonable timeline that team members can stick to. Managing professionals without understanding the project workflow can cause confusion and delays, preventing you from efficiently identifying the cause of any issues that take place.

Set goals as a team and individually to guide your management efforts. Creating goals at the beginning of a project gives you a guideline as a leader and keeps everyone focused on how their behaviour affects the success of a project or initiative. Write each goal down so that you have a document you can reference when assessing project success at key benchmarks. Discuss with your team the steps everyone needs to take to accomplish their goals, providing everyone with opportunities to ask questions and make suggestions about strategies for meeting or exceeding team goals.

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3. Assess your team members

The first step to effective management is understanding the people you're managing. Depending on their personality type, people respond differently to various leadership styles. Some people require hands-on management, while others excel with freedom and flexibility. Strong leaders can adjust their management techniques depending on who they are working with, cultivating every team member's individual potential with personalised attention.

Related: Team Management Skills: Examples and Improvement Strategies

4. Delegate tasks to your team

Learning how to trust others with key tasks allows you to focus on high-level management duties instead of micromanaging each responsibility on a project. Once you learn about each team member's strengths, weaknesses, experiences and skills, you can accurately delegate jobs to the people who are likely to do them well within the time frame. Delegating tasks involves setting clear expectations with each person and ensuring that they feel confident in their ability to complete their portion of the project. By delegating responsibilities to others, you show trust in their abilities and help them feel invested in a project's outcome.

Related: Management Skills: Definition and Examples

5. Provide positive reinforcement

Positive reinforcement is a highly effective management technique where you reward people who show excellence in the workplace. Be vocal when you notice someone producing quality work, and encourage team members to celebrate one another's success. You can recognise excellent work by something as simple as verbal praise or through a structured reward system, depending on what motivates your team the best. Find something positive about everyone on your team to emphasise so that you can recognise top performers and encourage others to be more confident as they grow their skills.

Related: How to Motivate Employees: 12 Effective Ways to Boost Morale

6. Host check-ins and ask for feedback

Just as it's important for you to give clear, constructive feedback to your team, it's also critical for you to seek feedback about your management skills. Give your team the opportunity to share their experience and offer suggestions on how you can be a better manager and provide the support to succeed. When you receive input from your team, thank them for their thoughts and consider how to resolve the issue.

Schedule regular group and one-on-one meetings to assess the progress of each person you manage. High-performing team members may have trouble voicing issues, so it's important to take the initiative as a leader to ask about their workload and any challenges they might have experienced. Keep a log of what you discuss during each check-in so that you can identify common issues or long-term patterns that require special attention on an organisational or procedural level.

Related: A Complete Guide on How to Handle Criticism at Work

Why effective management is important

By learning to manage people more effectively, you can improve your leadership skills and create a positive workplace environment. Managing others allows you to ensure projects and tasks are on time and that the team can consistently reach their goals. These are some ways effective management can improve your workplace:

Create a more efficient workplace

Effective management can create more efficient work. This is because when you manage the people on your team, you can monitor their progress and offer feedback when they need it. Understanding which team members are most skilled in each area allows you to assign tasks strategically and increase efficiency.

Facilitate team collaboration

When you manage the people in your team effectively, you can facilitate collaboration. Excellent managers identify conflict and act as mediators to resolve problems before they affect productivity. Leaders can also lead by example, demonstrating excellent communication and collaboration abilities. They also design and lead exercises that improve professional relationships and team cohesion.

Related: Improving Collaboration at the Workplace

Reduce costs and increase profits

Teams that produce more efficient work and reduce errors through effective management can reduce costs and increase profit. When the organisation can spend less money remedying mistakes or paying for additional training, it can lower costs through effective management. A team that functions well because of a skilled manager may also produce more creative and effective work, adding value to the company and potentially increasing profit.

Develop a healthy workplace

If you're a team leader, you can develop a healthy workplace through effective management. You can guide your team members on the best behaviour and ways to respond appropriately to problems and conflict. Part of managing people well is understanding how to improve their relationships with other professionals and create a workplace environment that promotes honesty and communication.

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Tips for successful management

These are some tips you can use for successful management:

  • Monitor and improve communication: To manage the people on your team better, track and record the communication that takes place among staff. For example, you can note when miscommunication occurs and implement solutions for avoiding it in the future.

  • Meet your own expectations: When you set expectations for the staff members in your team, you can manage more effectively by observing rules and meeting your own expectations. This allows you to set a good example and develop trust with your team.

  • Allow for flexibility and growth: You may try management strategies that don't work immediately, and it's important to consider other options and allow for flexibility and growth. Which management styles work best may depend on your team and the individuals within it, so it's important to try new strategies and commit to consistent improvement.

  • Actively resolve staff conflicts: Staff conflicts can arise when two team members don't agree on how to complete a task. By observing your team and identifying these conflicts, you can communicate and facilitate agreements.

  • Give and request honest feedback: Feedback is an excellent tool for understanding your performance and providing guidance to your team. To give feedback, you can conduct frequent meetings and reviews, and to request feedback, you can be honest with your team members about reviewing your performance and communicating with you regarding concerns.

Related: How To Give Feedback Professionally at Work (With Examples)

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