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Managing Middle Managers

Help valuable middle managers bring out the best in your business.

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This story appears in the March 2007 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

A decade ago, middle managers were reviled as resource-hogging deadwood, and companies eliminated countless middle management jobs in a frenzy of de-layering. Today, however, that's turned around, and entrepreneurs such as Brad Heath are making sure that their managers in the middle are numerous, skilled and motivated enough to help their companies grow.

"They're very important because I can't focus on all the different areas that they do and give those adequate attention," says Heath, founder and CEO of VirTex Assembly Services Inc., a $10 million Austin, Texas, electronics manufacturing company that includes a dozen middle managers on its 45-person payroll. "If I try to do that, I can't focus on my mission, which is charting the direction of the company," explains Heath, 44.

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