At Supermac’s we believe in developing our core team members as we know that they play a critical role in our success. We work hard at developing both their technical and soft skills. The LEAP Management Development Programmes have been very helpful in developing the people management skills of our newly appointed managers. The focus of the programmes is on the practical application of skills – it’s not simply about the theory.
Immediate Impact on Managers’ Performance
As an organisation that is expanding rapidly and working in a fast paced sector we need to make sure that any time spent away from the store is worthwhile. There must be an immediate and positive impact on the shop’s performance. The 6 sessions in the programme were designed around our needs and given the experience of the trainer we knew that exercises and case studies would focus on what it’s like working in Supermac’s.
The response from our team members who participated on the programme has been very positive. There has been evidence of increased confidence and we’ve seen managers change their behaviours following training. We believe our managers are stronger and more effective as a result of the investment Supermac’s put into their development. Our participants not only attend the programme, they work hard at securing QQI certification which is important. This is a valuable tool for career progression. Our employees are proud of achieving certification and recognise that it demonstrates capability to their managers.
Management Training Workshops and ‘Positive Pressure’
I think participants find the QQI certification the most challenging aspect of the programme but that’s a good thing! It’s challenging because it gets participants to think about how they are applying learning. This means they must look at ways of using learning from each workshop and building new habits. Participants also share what they have applied with others at each workshop. Everybody has to explain what they’ve done since the previous workshop and this ‘positive pressure’ is good.
Continuous Support and Training for Managers
We continue to provide the Management Development Programmes for our managers because Supermac’s believes in developing and investing in people. We know there are many who join the Supermac’s team who are keen to build a career and not simply have a job. This programme is an important step for a person working on their careers.
Saša Marjanović Operations Manager, Supermac’s
If you would like to learn more about LEAP’s management training programme and other services, then get in touch with us. Our business advisors will be happy to discuss your training and development needs.
People generally dislike or avoid conflict. It makes them uncomfortable so ignoring escalating issues is an approach adopted by many. However, when addressed early and effectively it can help clear tensions, address underlying issues and lead to innovation. So what are the signs of conflict and what causes conflict to escalate?
1. Dismissing Concerns
When employees raise an issue more than once it is clear the issue is of importance or the issue hasn’t been adequately addressed. Brushing the employee off with a comment such as “we discussed this already so let’s move on” is unsatisfactory. The person needs to fully understand the rationale behind the approach being taken and time needs to be given to discussing it. Once discussed and explored a statement closing the issue needs to be made e.g. “Now that we’ve explored this issue and understand what we have now agreed to do, we need to move to implementing our decision.”
2. Undermining Decisions
Teams need to agree the decision-making process and adhere to it. If an individual doesn’t adhere to the process then the decision is undermined and is more likely to result in conflict. Watch for signs that decisions are being undermined. Remind your team of the decision making process and the importance of sticking to that process.
3. Interpersonal Conflict
Requests for change in working habits or working teams is often an indication that an issue exists. Perhaps it’s nothing and the reasons behind the request are personal. Great. Now you can address it. However, it may be more. It may be that there is an issue between individuals within the team. If left unaddressed this will generally escalate and could possibly result in the individual claiming bullying exists. Keep the lines of communication open and make sure you regularly check in with employees that all is going well. Caught early there are many options available to you for addressing the issue. Left too long and your limited options may narrow to the least favoured one: litigation.
Tricia Cunningham is a partner and business advisor at LEAP.
How do you manage conflict resolution in your workplace? Share your thoughts in comments box below.
LEAP are the experts in leadership and management development for managing directors and team leaders. Contact us to see how we can help you and your staff.
In a new management training series business advisor John Rafterydiscusses Visual Management, a business methodology that has worked wonders for management teams within large corporate organisations. Here he explains how you can visualise your company’s success story and why this visual approach is more successful than traditional methods, and how small and medium businesses can benefit from the ‘display and engage’ approach.
What is Visual Management?
I work a lot with clients in the SME sector and often when I go into their offices or business premises I see little by way of business related posters, graphs, bulletin boards, Key Performance Indicators (KPI) or business charts around the building. But if you walk into a multinational corporation’s building that’s exactly what you find.
Every type of visual mechanism is being used to try and get the message across to the workforce about what the company represents, how it’s performing and what it’s key goals are and what it’s key performance indicators are on a daily basis. So really visual management is about trying to take that culture from the multinational organisations and try to bring it into the SME sector.
Why is visual management better than traditional methods?
Why is visual management better, or an improvement on, the way companies currently work? The answer is simple; the thing is that for the vast majority of companies I work with the key information is being kept in people’s heads, or stored on spreadsheets on their laptops. Everybody in the organisation then assumes that everyone else knows what’s going on, but in actual fact a lot of that key business information remains hidden away and largely ignored.
Visual management is about trying to extract the most important facets of that business information and make it visual. In other words to display the most vital information on a noticeboard or Gantt chart, or to represent KPIs through the use of bar graphs. You get the information out there and this helps engage people more in the business process.
It distils the information into communicative, more consumable pieces for management team members and team leaders to track, understand and act upon. Remember one of the most important things about trying to communicate with people; people remember what they see and engage with, they recall very little of what they hear. If teams are fully engaged with the company’s goals and vision they come to understand it and that has a powerful effect.
Are you using visual management in your company? What effect has it had on your team? Let us know with a comment in the box below.
Whether you’re a newly appointed manager or one with extensive experience, managing a demotivated team is challenging, frustrating and time consuming. Here are 3 common management mistakes often made that result in teams being demotivated and unproductive:
1. Demonstrating a lack of interest in the person
Generally speaking, people spend more time interacting with their colleagues at work than they do with family and friends – people may be at home for 14 hours on a work day but they spend a significant amount of that time sleeping! So the workplace is an important place in their lives. People who don’t feel valued and supported at work become demotivated with a corresponding drop in productivity.
2. Refusing to address poor working relationships between team members
Most people dislike conflict. It isn’t the easiest issue to address as it has the potential to escalate or expand to involve others in the organisation. However, conflict can be successfully resolved and indeed avoided if addressed early. Disagreement is healthy as it can often lead to newer, more innovative suggestions being identified. When disagreement becomes entrenched or personalised it is unhealthy and a manager needs to tackle it immediately. Believing it will go away or resolve itself often leads to the issue escalating resulting in individuals withdrawing, taking sides or fuelling the fire.
3. Making assumptions that all is well
Managers are sometimes reluctant to ask the question “Is everything okay?” for fear that the answer may be “no”. Regularly asking the question allows individuals to raise concerns or issues early when they can be easily resolved. It builds stronger relationships between managers and team members enhancing communication and co-operation.