As a team-focused manager, there are a few things that I find quite difficult:
- Convincing your team to trust in short term pain for long term gain
- Handling personality conflicts, because there’s not much people can do about their innate personalities
- Losing people
My favourite part of the job is the regular 1-on-1 meetings I have with my team. I learn all about them; their families, habits, likes & dislikes, and that helps me be a better manager. It also helps them open up to me when there is a real problem that needs to be remedied. This means we get close. Closer than most bosses & employees, which is great, until someone decides to leave.
It’s like losing a close friend. I know it’s nothing personal, but that doesn’t prevent me from wondering if there’s something I could have done. I’m the leader, right? So it must have been Something I did, or didn’t do, that made this person want to leave. That feeling is horrible.
I spend a good long time finding and choosing the right people to add to my team, so losing one is always bad. It throws everything off balance, and changes the dynamic… and in general, it’s just kind of a bummer.
I don’t have a solution to this. People gonna change. Needs gonna change. That’s life. But what I’m not going to do is stop investing in these relationships. Taking my emotions out of the equation would make things much easier, but that’s not the kind of world I want to live in. I want a warm world where people care, even if it’s inconvenient. I want a world where people love, even if that means risking hurt.
To me, management is caring.