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Once & For All: Stopping Sexual Harassment at Work

9 Essential Supervisory Skills

Every workplace needs strong supervisory skills, and CRM Learning offers the best supervisor training videos at low cost. Train your supervisors using the nine essential supervisory skills featured in our supervisor training video, “After All, You’re the Supervisor.”

After All, You're the Supervisor imageUsing the scenario of Alec, a recently-promoted Customer Service Representative now asked to lead his previous co-workers, the video teaches nine skills your supervisors need to manage subordinates effectively and efficiently.

1. Acknowledge Your New Role

Having been a superior customer service representative, when Alec is promoted to supervisor, he struggles a bit moving from friend and colleague to “boss.” Alec learns that new responsibilities are required in this role along with a new level of authority. The hard part for many new supervisors like Alec is acknowledging that in order to be effective, you must change the way you interact with your team members.

  1. Plan and Prioritize

In order to be successful, Alec will need to plan and prioritize his – and his team’s – responsibilities and tasks. This includes listing tasks and generating a plan for how to get things accomplished on time. Inevitably, this process will also include delegating tasks to others, which Alec also learns in a later skill point.

  1. Be Accessible

Every great supervisor makes themselves accessible to their employees. Alec learns that this can take the form of an open door, walking around the department, having regular meetings with team members, or learning to take advantage of spontaneous “coachable moments” when you see them.

  1. Encourage Teamwork

Alec quickly realizes that he is no longer an “individual contributor.” Creating a well-functioning team is part of his new job. Encouraging teamwork enables supervisors to go further in accomplishing departmental and company objectives.  It also helps create great team cohesion and high morale. High performance teamwork is achieved by ensuring that your team is comprised of diverse individuals with a range of complementary skills and then fully utilizing those skills. By fostering cooperation rather than competition within your team, and by modeling good teamwork behaviors yourself, you will see team results soar.

  1. Communicate Upward AND Downward

An efficient supervisor communicates effectively both “upwards” to his or her manager and “downwards” to his subordinates.  Downward communication is the process of communicating the direction, philosophy, goals, and values of the company to the team. It also applies to changes communicated to the team, and if done correctly, helps them buy-in to decisions that affect them. Alec employs upward communication when he shares his team’s concerns over a software update with his boss and keeps her informed of how the “front line workers” are using the software.

  1. Delegate

Supervisors need to delegate tasks to their team in order to effectively supervise. No supervisor can do all the work on their own, so Alec learns to consider his team member’s strengths as he evaluates who should be assigned which tasks. He also learns that following up on the tasks you delegate allows you to ensure their completion, support your team members, and uncover and resolve problems. 

  1. Discipline Effectively

For a brand-new supervisor like Alec, effective discipline is perhaps the most difficult thing to learn, especially when you are disciplining the person you were sitting next to last week. Alec must discipline a coworker, Libby, who repeatedly returns late from lunch. In doing so, he learns that effective discipline places the responsibility for the problem and the solution on the employee, rather than him, and that effective discipline provides for a positive outcome rather than a punitive one.

  1. Provide Feedback

As important as it is to discipline your people effectively and give constructive feedback, it is equally important to recognize when they are doing a good job, and praise or reward them for that performance. Alec gets practice giving constructive feedback to a coworker who slightly missed the mark on an assignment, and later gives genuine and specific praise to that team member when he does a better job.

  1. Model the Way

Perhaps the most effective way to modify team culture is by modeling the behaviors and attitudes you want to see in the team. No matter how much you tell your people how you want them to behave, unless you show it yourself, it won’t have much effect. Model behaviors such as respect, punctuality, attitude, conflict resolution, and in Alec’s case, good customer service and pitching in to help out a different team.

These nine essential supervisory skills are a well-rounded introduction into the basics of supervising. Let Alec and his team teach your new supervisors how to manage others effectively with After All, You’re the Supervisor.

CRM Learning offers the best supervisor training videos on the market. Visit our website and browse all of our supervisor training topics.

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