Three qualities a Manager should possess


Everyone will have one or more traits prominent in his/her character. Some are emotional, some short tempered, some caring, some very centred etc. As a part of gearing up to take up a certain role in his career, one has to tune his character to suit the role he assumes. Here in this blog we will try to understand what are the prominent characters a manager should nourish to handle his role properly.

Before going in to it in details, I am giving an example here below to give more clarity on what I mean. If a person with soft nature has taken strong decision to be a police officer, he has to imbibe a tough nature in him or else he might not be able to handle tough situations resulting from his role. So even before he goes ahead and assumes the new role, only 2 options are left for the person
1. Either he nurture his character to suit the new role
2. Or he forgoes his new role and accepts another role which suits his basic character.

Similarly, now, let us see what a manager/aspiring manager should nourish in his character for it to suit his role as a manager.

Managerial post requires a fine balance of 3 three states of mind as given below
1. A manager needs to be of HARD NATURE when it comes to his DELIVERY – A proper task master
2. He should be of DIPLOMATIC NATURE when it comes to dealing with CLIENT/SENIORS – A proper negotiator
3. The same person should be of CARING and EMPATHETIC NATURE when he deals with his TEAM – A proper care taker

Now let us see what each permutation and combination of the above 3 will lead to. I suggest if you are a manager/aspiring manager, see your fitness in to the below categories and find the gap to scale up to the most desired character - the ultimate combination.

Combination 1 :
A manager having only HARD nature without having a DIPLOMTIC and CARING nature will be a pure task master. His focus generally will be mainly to ensure task given to him is complete at any cost and does not like to give way for criticism. He looks up to majorly his own satisfaction on whatever he is doing.
He will
• He will be good at timely and quality delivery.
• Take up maximum load without a looking at team’s capacity and try to complete the same as a challenge.
• A successful delivery is generally his personal pride.
• In short - medium term he will earn team’s dissatisfaction as they will get stressed out easily – This can lead to an unstable team and attrition.
• In short-medium term, he will be good with all clients as he will take up challenges and keep them happy
• In long term he will settle being good with some clients and not so good with some others as his delivery strategy will start earning uneven efficiency from the team.

Verdict – Never a desired character for a manager as the two basic desired qualities – people management and client management is missing.

Combination 2 :
A manager having only DIPLOMATIC nature without having a HARD and CARING nature will be a pure negotiator. His focus generally will be to negotiate with the client or his seniors on whatever he feels is correct and try to get minimum tasks and execute the same well.
He will
• Will be good at timely and quality delivery.
• Will in medium term earn organization’s dissatisfaction as his ability to grow the account will have constrains.
• Will in turn earn team’s dissatisfaction as they will not get better roles due to limited scalability.
• Will in medium term earn client dissatisfaction as he is not able to provide innovating solutions or because he is not good at taking challenges.

Verdict – Not a desired character for a manager as these people fits more in to roles like sales/marketing than delivery. Moreover being people non friendly they cannot manage team’s expectations properly.

Combination 3 :
A manager having only CARING nature without having a HARD and DIPLOMATIC nature will be a pure people’s person. His focus generally will be to ensure his team is happy and he doesn’t get criticism from them at any cost. He will be good at taking team out for breaks, having fun with them etc.
He will
• Will easily slip on his deliverables
• Will in short term earn organization’s dissatisfaction as his ability to grow the account will be an issue
• Will in short term earn client dissatisfaction as he is not able to provide innovating solutions or because he is not good at taking challenges
• Will in long term earn team’s dissatisfaction as they will not get better roles due to limited scalability
• Will be highly dependent on his own manager to get his tasks completed as his own accountability will be limited

Verdict: Such people never makes a good manager as they are very emotional and cannot take hard stands against people/delivery when required. They bring major dissatisfaction from client in long run and acts as a slow poison in the system.

Combination 4 :
A manager having only HARD + BALANCED nature without having a soft side will be a good task master with assertive nature. His focus generally will be mainly to ensure the client task given to him is complete at any cost and ensure client satisfaction by way of flawless delivery and proper client negotiations. He looks up on majorly organizations interest and believes in productivity, quality, timeliness etc of the employees. They generally go by rules.
He will
• Will be good at timely and quality delivery
• Will create same level of satisfaction across different clients – almost all at good satisfaction level.
• In short-medium term earn good remarks from both organization and client in this role
• Will be target driven
• Can quickly earn team’s dissatisfaction

Verdict : Will shine in manager position for some duration due to his delivery excellence but will quickly move to a target driven role where he has limited team members to deal with (e.g. sales, marketing etc)


Combination 5 :
Managers having only HARD + CARING nature without having a DIPLOMATIC side will be a good task master as well as people’s person. Their focus generally will be mainly to ensure the client task given to him is complete with proper care taken to ensure that people are not stressed out. They generally miss out a crucial part of the role- to set the expectation right with the client on the timelines. Though there will be minimum lapses in delivery, client satisfaction or team caring, these people end up delivering at the expense of their own health and time. They go by emotions.
They will
• Will be good at timely and quality delivery
• Will create same level of satisfaction across different clients – almost all at good satisfaction level.
• In short-medium-long term earn good remarks from organization, client and team in this role
• Will end up keeping all happy, but leaving hardly any time for his own personal life
• Will end up taking team’s pressure on his shoulders

Verdict : Though their strategy is good for the client and team, it will create a lot of imbalance in his personal-professional life and is not sustainable. He will have high chances of stagnation in career due to limited scalability and high level of personal stress out. His efforts will be appreciated in short to medium terms, but will undergo criticism as he go up the ladder to take up more responsibilities.

Combination 6 :
Managers having only DIPLOMATIC + CARING nature without having a HARD side will be a good negotiator and people’s person. Their focus generally will be mainly to ensure both client and team is happy. Delivery is not necessarily in their core focus/strength. They end up missing deadlines, but are good at handling client while dealing with it. They are generally good people person and have high emotional quotient.
They will
• Will not be good at timely and quality delivery.
• Will somehow create a decent level of satisfaction across different clients but will not be sustainable – given a chance the client will express their overall dissatisfaction.
• In short-medium term earn good remarks from organization, client and team in this role.
• In long term earn dissatisfaction from organization, client and team as he will start missing his deadlines and his patch up measures will start losing its sheen.

Verdict : They are quick fixers and are good at dealing with a prevailing issue but it is not a sustainable strategy to keep them in any good position. They are very bad at identifying risks and mitigating the same before it becomes an issue.

Ultimate combination
Managers who knows how to handle his HARD + DIPLOMATIC + CARING nature equally well. They will be a good task master and a good negotiator and a good people’s person. Their focus mainly will be to attain highest level of client satisfaction, through top notch quality and timeliness without stressing out the team on a continuous basis.
• They will be extremely good at timely and quality delivery.
• They will create a good level of sustainable satisfaction across different clients.
• They in short-medium-long term will earn good remarks from organization, client and team in this role.
• They will create opportunities for organization through their over dealings with client.
• Their scalability will be high due to the fine balance they maintain.
• They generally have ‘YES’ nature in them, but will objectively analyse each opportunity/challenge before saying ‘YES!’ thereby keeping a fine balance.

Verdict : Ideal situation to which every aspiring manager should reach to. Very few people reach this state and hence if you are able to nurture all three qualities, you will be among the very few successful leader.

Now that we know what the three basic qualities expected from a manager, the following are some tips on how a good manager handles all the above three aspects well. You may keep adding to it as and when you experience new.

Click on the below chart for more clarity

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