5 Skills Every Manager Should Have

By: Megan Jones

As the age old saying goes, people don’t leave jobs, they leave bosses. An effective manager will have a variety of skills to best aid their direct reports. A good manager will be successful in delegating work, meeting deadlines, and able to successfully communicate with their reports. A great manager will form meaningful connections with their direct reports and develop relationships that help with retention for the organization. Whether you are a new or seasoned manager here are 5 skills every manager should have.


Communication is vital, as a manager you should be able to effectively communicate both verbally and in written format. In the workplace communication is everywhere, from quick messages on teams, slack, or skype, formal email communication, to verbal conversation and meetings. Being able to communicate across all mediums is imperative for success. As a manager, it is important to have a conversation with your employees to let them know your communication style. Some managers prefer to give instruction strictly over email for a written trail. Others may prefer to host weekly meetings to provide instruction and delegate projects. Let your reports know your style and be flexible to adapt to theirs. Moreover, ask your reports how they prefer to receive information, and try to find a place where you both your feel confident when communicating.

Time Management

Time management is another essential skill to have. As a manager, it can be difficult as you may have multiple people to manage, timelines, and projects to manage. It can be a lot to juggle so being able to stay organized and manage your time effectively is important. As a direct report, you want to know that you can go to your manager and your manager will also prioritize your time as well. As a manager, consider making a list of your priorities and organize which you need to work on first. Then delegate suitable tasks to your reports. If an emergency project comes up unexpectedly, reevaluate and let any affected parties know that there has been a change and when you expect to be able to get back to them.


A good manager is an advocate for their direct reports. As a manager, you should push your direct reports to continue to grow professionally. Furthermore, you should have conversations with your reports and ask them how and where they would like to grow. Moreover, you should support your team during a challenging situation or during times of change, and provide them guidance or advice. Your employees are a representation of you and how you effectively manage. Ensure you schedule time with them to help them and build a strong relationship with them.

Conflict Resolution

Conflict is inevitable and a good manager can effectively solve problems that arise. Whether it is conflict between your employees, or a conflict within a project, take the initiative to problem solve. There may be times when you need to mediate a conversation. During conflict, ensure every person or option has the opportunity to present themselves, then find a resolution. In many cases resolution is within compromise. As a manager ensure to stay calm and be a helping hand in finding the resolution.

Willingness to Learn

As a manager you have a plethora of knowledge that is exceptionally useful, however you don’t have all the answers. You can learn a lot of from other managers, your employees, and the organization. There is always room for growth and to continue learning. Ensure that you keep an open mind and continue to learn and grow yourself.

Being a manager comes with a lot of responsibility and you have to have a lot of tools in your tool belt. We hope these tips help you thrive and create a stronger relationship with your employees.

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