Why You Should Throw Out Your To-Do List And Do This Instead…

Most of us wouldn’t know what to concentrate on first if we didn’t have our to-do lists in front of us.

A common evening activity for many busy professionals is to compile or revise a list of all the pressing tasks for the next day. Learn More

How To Throw A Christmas Party Nobody Will Forget

Every year,  employers have the same problem, how to top last year’s Christmas party.

This event allows you to show your appreciation for your staff’s hard work all year, and allows them interact with their colleagues in a stress-free environment. Learn More

Would You Benefit From A Virtual Assistant?

Everyone knows the benefits of having an assistant – a person who can help you with your workload and personal errands so you can concentrate on more pressing tasks. Learn More

How To Win An Argument Against Your Boss

If asked, most employees would likely answer that one of their worst fears at work would be having an argument with their boss.

However, as frightening as this thought is, sometimes it is inevitable. Learn More

3 Quick Tips On How To Stress & Infuriate Your Team

There a multitude of articles online detailing how managers can help their staff manage their stress levels.

Certainly, tight schedules, big workloads and an off balance in work-life ratio can be to blame; however, oftentimes, leaders are the very ones responsible for causing their subordinates to worry. Learn More

Alternative Ways To Hold Staff Meetings That Actually Get Results

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Meetings can drain the life out of a company, with people spending so much time at meetings that they can’t actually do any work. But maybe you know that, and have already tried all of the standard tactics to reduce meeting time such as designating some meetings tactical and some strategic, starting meetings with a lightning round of issues, or even avoiding meetings all together in favour of emails or phone calls. Yet there are still meetings that must be held. Learn More

Where is Your Management Career Going?

Too often I see people earn the title of manager and then lose themselves in their new identity. Some will thrive and grow in their new positions while others will become stagnant after a period of time.

Most, when asked, will say they are “a manager” and my next question is always this:

What type of manager are you?

Truth be told, there are plenty of differences. We have general managers, senior managers, managers, supervisors, and – well – you get it… you could place a wide variety of different terms on the different levels or types of management. I know of one company that assigned the title of “Assistant Vice President” to every mid-level manager in the organization. Sounds nice, right? The problem is that many people don’t understand exactly what their titles mean.

Let’s take a look at a couple of those titles and their definitions:

  • General managers have a very broad responsibility, in most cases. General managers aren’t responsible for one specific part of an organisation. Instead they are responsible for the function of all areas – with each individual manger of those areas to get the jobd one.
  • Senior managers usually work in organisations with a lot of employees – those who feel as those there are so many levels they need to add additional people to the hierarchy to help keep control. Senior level managers generally fall somewhere below the general manager, but above a regular department manager.
  • Managers, in general, are individuals in charge of directing the work of a specific group of people. Managers may be in charge of an entire department, or they may be in charge of a team within a department. They’ll either report directly to the general manager, or to a “senior manager” above them.
  • A supervisor, in some cases, is considered a manager. In other places, a supervisor is someone who is in a junior management position. Supervisors may be in charge of a small portion of a team, reporting back to the manager at the end of the day as to the status of a project. Supervisors generally have very little authority, and in some cases can’t even hire or fire employees.

Where do you fall on the management mall map? Are you where you want to be, or are you aching to move up the corporate ladder?

Thanks again,

Sean

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

http://www.mtdtraining.com

Management Blog Call To Action

You Survived a Layoff. Now What?

The state of the economy, worldwide, has left hundreds upon thousands seeking employment. Those who have not lost their jobs often find themselves wondering whether they would be better off if they had been let go instead of taking the brunt of the aggravation and, now, short-staffing in their current offices.

The truth? Managers don’t only look at salaries when they determine who they’re doing to layoff when times are tough. They look at the big picture and try to determine how they can save money without losing quality workers. If it comes to choosing between a higher paid employee with a great attitude versus a lower paid employee with a terrible attitude, the lower paid employee may just find himself on the chopping block.

So what can you do now that you’ve found yourself in the position of survival? Here are a few things you can do, both as an employee and from a managerial standpoint, to make your life a bit easier.

  • Acknowledge the fact that you can’t do everything and do your best to prioritize. Do the most important work first and let the rest wait.
  • Remain as positive and realistic as possible at all times. Do what you can and don’t fight the natural flow. You have no control over your organisation’s overall progress and, if things end badly, it won’t be due to your lack of performance.
  • Make sure you act like a leader. Your remaining team members will be looking to you for guidance and reassurance.
  • Use your managerial and communication skills to keep in touch with other departments. Make sure you have systems in place to ensure you’re still helping each other effectively despite changes in staff.
  • Let your employees know that you still expect high quality work but that you do not expect them to turn into super-people overnight. Acknowledge that they are human and may not be able to simply absorb the work left behind by past employees.
  • Offer support to your team members, especially those who aren’t coping with the new changes and stresses as well. Do what you can to let them vent without losing track of their goals.

Layoffs are sad but not abnormal. Do your best to regroup and move on. You still have a job, and you’ll want to keep it as long as possible.

Thanks again,

Sean

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

http://www.mtdtraining.com

Management Blog Call To Action

Honesty and Success Go Hand in Hand – Or Do They?

There’s a rumor circulating about the world of business – it states that honesty pays. Every once in a while, though, I have to wonder if honesty is really the foundation upon which successful businesses are based on.

About 20 years ago there was an article in the Harvard Business Review. The article questioned whether or not honesty and integrity were prominent factors when determining if a business will become successful or not. Realistically speaking, building a business upon a dishonest foundation is completely possible. It can be profitable. And the odds of getting caught are – well – slim to none, in most cases.

To start the week off I’d like you to think about your position within your business. Have you, as a manager, ever made an unethical decision? Have you ever told a little white lie just to convince an employee to meet a goal or to make a sale? Do you think that you, as a manager are the only person bending the truth to get things done? How deep into your organisation would you have to dig to uncover something bitter – and perhaps a lot more questionable in terms of ethics?

Over the next couple of days we’ll take a look at a few situations that push the line when it comes to ethics. I hope we’ll prove that you can build a business with 100% honesty and integrity – even if it does take a little more work upfront!

Thanks again,

Sean

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

http://www.mtdtraining.com

Management Blog Call To Action

5 Tips To Ensure That Your Employees Are Safe In The Workplace

In the past we’ve talked about workplace safety but from the standpoint of employee burnout and, more recently, the importance of having a plan if your organisation is affected by a pandemic like the H1N1 virus. Today, though, I’d like to take a step back and look at workplace safety from a more general viewpoint.

You may think that the fact you work in an office exempts you from workplace safety. You are, after all, simply sitting at a desk all day, right? Wrong. Employees trip and fall, burn themselves in the kitchen, and even suffer from health issues while at work. So what can you do to ensure you workplace is safe for everyone all of the time?

5. Keep Your Work Areas Clean

Whether you work in an office or in a warehouse it’s important to always keep your work area clean. Strewn garbage, unattended wires, and boxes piled floor to ceiling can create dangerous hazards for those who need to move around them.

4. Give Clear Instructions

Workplace safety is, as a manager, partly your responsibility. If you don’t give your employees clear instructions about what they need to do they may do the wrong thing, or put together an incorrect set of pieces of information – causing danger to themselves and others.

3. Show You Care

So you’re running on a deadline but the printer is smoking or an important machine is making a terrible grinding noise. Do you push through and hope the machines last or do you shut them down to avoid a potential safety hazard? Hopefully you show your employees that you care about them more than deadlines by shutting the machines down.

2. Ensure Everyone is Properly Trained

One of the best ways to avoid an accident is to ensure everyone on your team is properly trained. A new or inexperienced employee can easily make a mistake that a seasoned veteran might take for granted. Offer the right amount of training and then make sure new employees are supervised properly until they gain enough experience to ensure total safety.

1. Ditch Workplace Safety Incentives

Workplace safety incentives are some of the silliest things I’ve ever seen. Offering employees incentives to be safe is like saying you expect them to do stupid things and need to bribe them not to. I’m not saying you should punish them for being unsafe but I don’t think they should behonored for doing what they should be doing naturally to begin with.

Are you ready to start the week on a safe note? Good luck!

Thanks again,

Sean

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

http://www.mtdtraining.com

Management Blog Call To Action