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How to Improve as a Leader by Optimizing Your Management Style Effective management involves a clear and coherent strategy, empowering team members, recognizing and celebrating team achievements, involving the team in decisions and asking questions. By implementing these principles, a manager can create a culture of trust, innovation and productivity, ultimately leading to more substantial business success.

By Roland Polzin

entrepreneur daily

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

The success of a business largely depends on how well it is managed. It involves planning, organizing, leading and directing resources to achieve desired outcomes.

One critical aspect of effective management is a clear and coherent strategy. Without a clear strategy, it's impossible to effectively plan for the future, make informed decisions or set goals for the organization.

A good manager understands the company's unique position in the market and uses that high-level perspective to plan for the future. They also have a clear goal and choose what to do and what not to do to achieve it. Finally, they're flexible enough to adapt to changes in the market.

Related: Hybrid, Remote Work or Flexible Hours? Know Your Team and What Motivates Them

Another essential part of effective management is empowering team members. Empowering team members means delegating tasks and responsibilities and creating a culture of trust and autonomy. A good manager understands that they can't do everything themselves and trusts their team members to take on tasks and make decisions. This approach frees up the manager's time, allowing them to focus on higher-level tasks like strategy and decision-making.

Creating a culture of trust and autonomy means giving team members a framework to work within and enough freedom to explore their ideas and strategies. This approach encourages team members to take ownership of their work and feel invested in the organization's success. When team members feel empowered, they're more likely to be motivated, engaged and productive.

Google is an example of a company that creates a culture of trust and autonomy. One of the ways that Google fosters a culture of trust and autonomy is through its "20% time" policy. The 20% time policy allows employees to spend up to one day per week working on projects that are not directly related to their primary job responsibilities.

This policy allows employees to explore their ideas and strategies and encourages them to take ownership of their work. As a result, many of Google's most successful products, such as Gmail and Google News, were developed as 20% time projects.

Related: 4 Behaviors Leaders Must Model to Build a Culture of Trust

In addition to the 20% time policy, Google encourages employees to participate in internal "hackathons" and other collaborative events. These events provide a framework for employees to work together on projects and share their ideas and expertise, allowing them to explore their own ideas and providing a supportive environment for collaboration.

Recognizing and celebrating team achievements is also critical for effective management. A good manager takes the time to acknowledge the contributions of team members and provides feedback that helps them grow and improve.

Encouraging creativity and innovation is also essential for building a motivated and productive team. A good manager should be open to new ideas and willing to try different problem-solving approaches. When team members feel like their ideas are valued, they're more likely to be creative and innovative.

This approach creates a culture of creativity and innovation because it allows team members to explore new ideas and strategies while also providing a framework for collaboration and feedback.

Involving the team in decisions is another critical aspect of effective management. Soliciting input from team members, encouraging diverse perspectives and building consensus is essential for making sound decisions. A good manager should involve the team in decision-making and encourage them to share their ideas and opinions. This approach fosters a sense of ownership and buy-in from the team, making them more invested in the organization's success.

Patagonia is an example of a company involving its team in decision-making processes. Patagonia is an outdoor clothing and gear company well-known for its commitment to sustainability and environmental activism. Patagonia's management recognizes that their employees have valuable insights and expertise that can be used to improve the sustainability of the company's products.

To this end, the company has established a "Green Team" of employees from various departments. This team is responsible for identifying areas where the company can reduce its environmental impact and develop new sustainability initiatives.

For example, the Green Team was instrumental in developing Patagonia's "Worn Wear" program, encouraging customers to repair their clothing rather than buy new products. The program includes a repair service that customers can use to extend the life of their products, as well as an online marketplace where customers can buy and sell used Patagonia clothing.

By involving their team in decision-making processes related to sustainability, Patagonia has created a culture of environmental responsibility and stewardship. Employees feel invested in the company's mission and are likelier to be engaged and motivated.

Related: The Antidote to a Toxic Culture Is a Culture of Trust -- Here's How to Build One

Asking open-ended questions is also critical for effective management. Asking questions encourages critical thinking and problem-solving and creates a culture of continuous improvement. A good manager should always be willing to ask questions and challenge the status quo. This approach encourages team members to think critically about their work and to look for ways to improve it continually.

Conclusion

In summary, effective management is essential for running a successful business. Effective management involves a clear and coherent strategy, empowering team members, recognizing and celebrating team achievements, involving the team in decisions and asking questions. By implementing these principles, a manager can create a culture of trust, innovation and productivity, ultimately leading to more substantial business success.

Roland Polzin

Co-Founder & CMO

As a former German Army officer, I made the unusual decision to become a tech entrepreneur in Silicon Valley and found Wing. My background provides me with a unique perspective on leadership, decision-making, and change management, and I hope to help others drive change and progress for the better.

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