In many business management courses, you’ll find that many academics suggest that there is a stark difference between management and leadership however, the two converge and form an all-round entrepreneur. While it is important to be a visionary leader who inspires, motivates and takes your team to greater heights, it is the tactical managerial competencies that bring your vision to life. Leadership is the car frame and managerial competencies are the engine that allows the car to move. As you read these 4 universally accepted managerial competencies, ask yourself if you possess them. If you don’t seem to be ticking many boxes, consider getting extra training and development to become a better all-round entrepreneur.
1. Communication Competency
As a good manager, you must able to communicate with all of your business’ stakeholders formally, informally and through negotiation. The product or service you may be selling or rendering may be the first of its kind, however, if the mouthpiece of the business (managers, employees, sales agents) struggles to effectively communicate, the business will not be successful. To keep formal lines of communication in your business between your team members, create standardized emails for each team member that represent your brand, use communication tools such as Slack or Trello to organize communication in your organization so that everyone is on the same page and projects are executed well. Informal lines of communication include the day-to-day conversations with clients, newsletters to clients on your mailing list, social media and brochures. Developing negotiation skills is imperative so that you are able to obtain the best deals for your business. Knowing how to communicate effectively is a good skill to have to manage a crisis, sign a new client and build good channels of communication in your business.
2. Financial Competency
It is a known fact that not all entrepreneurs with brilliant ideas automatically have the best financial management skills to go by. However, at a start-level, there often isn’t space in the budget to hire a top executive financial manager either. Therefore, it is your personal responsibility to strengthen your own financial competency with the resources that are available to you. Good financial management of your business includes keep a cash book, picking a suitable business bank account, a good grasp of the different financial statements and how to regularly update these, reconcile the cash book and bank statement, create and maintain management accounts and work on yearly capital expenditure and operational budgets.
3. Teamwork Competency
Building a team is no easy feat and it requires certain skills. Develop your ability to build and design teams, create a supportive environment and manage team dynamics. A good team is not built by accident. It is built by understanding the strengths and weaknesses of each team member, creating conflict resolution systems, communication lines and room for allowing employees to be creative and innovate in a controlled environment. Spend time reading management theories and organizational behavior to find tactics you can use in your company to develop a strong, loyal and dynamic team.
4. Global Awareness Competency
Businesses don’t operate in silos; they operate in a global and competitive environment. The job of management is to keep one eye on the business and another eye on the macroeconomy to plan and mitigate risk caused by global shifts and trends. A good example of failed global awareness competency is the decline of Blockbusters due to the advent of online streaming. The failure of management to follow global trends in the consumption of content wiped out the entire business model of the company. Had Blockbusters invested in research and development and continued to engage with the global market, online streaming of content could have been a revenue stream for them. Lesson to learn from this: Keep your eye above the business to see what is happening around you.
These are only but a few managerial competencies you must consistently harness in yourself and look for in managers that you will hire at a later stage of your business. With these competencies, you are guaranteed to see your business’ vision unfold successfully, measurably and impactfully.