Communicate success

By Holly Johnston, Sr. OEM & Special Markets coordinator, Honda Marine

The most important element in any successful enterprise is good management. Since it is incumbent upon them to create the environment for their company or work group, managers shoulder a huge responsibility to themselves and their employees. While there are many to being a successful manager, there are a few that are absolutely vital to creating a happy, healthy and successful work environment.

Perhaps the most important trait managers must possess is approachability. There is a fine line between being a manager and a friend, and it is imperative that managers not lose sight of their role in the eyes of your employees. Employees, on the other hand, must also be made to feel comfortable approaching their leaders when they need to talk. Promoting and maintaining an open door (and open ear!) policy can make a huge difference in any company’s success. Besides, you never know what opportunities you could be missing out on if people are uncomfortable talking to you.

Managers must also remember that employees have more to their lives than just work, and it is essential to respect that. While leaders should expect absolutely nothing but their employees’ finest when they are at work, it is also important to recognize that their family lives are equally important. You would be amazed how much it means to someone when you know their spouse’s or child’s name and ask about them!

Finally, it is essential that a company’s entire management team is on the same page and working towards a common goal. Too often, managers work from personal agendas (ambition, career goals, etc.), causing confusion and a lack of direction for employees. Lack of concrete goals or a common direction leads to disgruntled employees, which constitutes certain death for an organization. Never underestimate the power of shared goals, and be sure to communicate those goals clearly and often.

In the end, the best managers are those who communicate openly and frequently with their employees while taking a personal interest in the success of not only the company, but in everyone who contributes to making the company great.

This contribution is one in a series of solutions to the industry’s challenges as offered by female boating business professionals for the March 2008 issue of Boating Industry magazine. To view the article, Leading the way, including links to the entire list of solutions, click here.

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