The Strategist

Basic management problems and how to deal with them


09/23/2016 - 16:17



All managers are different yet they all have similar problems. How to evoke a sense of responsibility among employees? What to do with work avalanche? Do I need to be friendly with subordinates?



Manager with years of experience Denny Strigl and business consultant Frank Swiatek tried to answer the most important questions in their book ‘Managers, Can You Hear Me Now?’. A few tips you can use right now.

Four main objectives

There is one undeniable truth for management philosophy. Results must be the highest priority for a manager. A good one is able to set aside minor matters, and to understand what is necessary to achieve their tasks. Do not look for excuses. Do not put things on the back burner. Strive toward your goals.

How do you sort the wheat from the chaff? It's simple: you need to stop doing what you're doing (whoever you lead - lawyers, engineers or marketers), if it does not bring any of the following results:

Revenue growth
Attraction of new clients
Retention of existing customers
Cutting costs


Brevity and simplicity

The increasing complexity of work processes will only hinder you, so strain after brevity and simplicity. For example, most of paper work, including reports, lists etc., can be reduced to half a sheet of paper.
Some of managers enjoy bureaucracy, turning meaningless procedures into the ordinary practice for a company. However, a manager will never succeed if he is focused on preparation of reports, which nobody reads, or holding multiple meetings, which does not bring practical benefits. He should also take into account how often during the day his subordinates have to postpone their work to send an email or text message, or to answer the call. In fact, most of these breaks detract from solving truly important issues.

Do I need a consensus?

Oftentimes, managers strive for consensus and eventually find themselves in problems. They make huge efforts to achieve consent of colleagues before making a decision or take action.
These managers like to dot the i’s, and gain support of all parties before making a step forward. In order to achieve a consensus, they usually make changes to their plans and goals.
Managers seeking consensus often refuse to take any action because they do not believe in their ability to make right decisions. But action, even erroneous, is better than inaction. So do not be afraid to take responsibility. Managers, driven by good intentions, have a right to make mistakes. The main thing is an ability to quickly recognize and try to fix them.

Friendly attitude towards employees

Core task of any manager is to deliver results, not to become friends with subordinates. Managers are usually well aware of importance of paying attention to the people with whom they work. It is important to think about employees, but you certainly do not have to become friends, or do anything to make them feel happy (the mistake often made by many managers).

Behavior is the main reason for success or failure in a manager’s work. That it turns you into a skilled manager, a mediocre artist or a loser.

based on 'Managers, Can You Hear Me Now? Hard-Hitting Lessons on How to Get Real Results' by Denny Strigl and Frank Swiatek




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