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Traditionally, middle managers make up the largest managerial layer in an organization. The Middle Manager is responsible to those above them and those below them. They head a variety of departments and projects. In order for a company to operate smoothly, it is essential that those in middle management be committed to the goals of the organization and understands how to effectively execute these goals. It is crucial for businesses to focus on these essential managers and provide them with the opportunities to succeed. No matter the organization’s structure or size, it will benefit from employing well-trained middle managers. Having a middle manager understand their role in the organization is very important. They are in communication with a very large percentage of the company, and will have a large impact throughout the organization.

What is Management?

Effective Management

  • Task oriented

  • Develops strategies to reach goals

  • Uses job descriptions to define how work is done 

  • Goals are based on priorities

  • Predicts and adapts to change

  • Consistently evaluates and looks for ways to improve current methods


Efficient Management

  • Work oriented

  • Strives to keep the present system running well

  • Adheres strictly to job requirements

  • Avoids change

Monitors work and procedures

Characteristics of a Manager

  • Integrity:  A successful manager is trustworthy and will lead by example. 

  • Communication: Middle managers must be able to communicate effectively to senior managers and their employees.

  • Analytical Thinking: Managers need to think analytically in order to make decisions.

  • Focus and Composure: It is important that managers remain focused and composed at all times.

Unethical Behavior:

  • Breaking rules or policies

  • Discrimination

  • Inappropriate jokes or comments

  • Lack of compensation for work

  • Threats or acts of violence

Rational Decision-Making:

  • Define the decision: Before making a decision, determine what it is and why it is necessary. 

  • Determine the criteria:The criteria for the decision are based on the values, interests, and goals of the organization.

  • Evaluate the criteria:Evaluate the criteria to determine that it is appropriate and will help keep priorities in place. 

  • Explore options:At this point, brainstorm different answers.

  • Rate options:Evaluate and rate the answers for priority and effectiveness. 

  • Calculate the best decision:Select the decision with the best rating.

Managers’ Responsibilities:

  1. Meet business goals, vision, and objectives.

  2. Supervise and be responsible for the performance of team members.

  3. Hire, train, and develop employees.

  4. Indentify problems and come up with solutions.

  5. Share responsibility for the growth and success of the company.


Prioritizing Tasks:

  • Effectiveness: How important is the task in light of company goals or standards? Is it realistic to achieve?

  • Time: How long will the task take, and what is the affect on labor?

  • Cost: What is the cost of the task in terms of labor, supplies, and other resources?

Ethical Standards

  • Adhere to OSHA regulations.

  • Pay employees fairly.

  • Provide equal opportunity.

  • No tolerance for harassment of any kind.

  • Arrive at work on time and work as scheduled.

  • Converse respectfully.

  • No tolerance for threats or violent behavior.

Framework for Ethical Decisions:

  • Identify the ethics of a decision.

  • Acquire all of the facts about the situation.

  • Evaluate different options.

  • Monitor the situation after the decision is made.

  • Use the decision to guide new actions.

Creative Decisions:

  • Experience:Expertise in the field is imperative for all creative decisions.

  • Creative ability:Creative skill includes confidence, self-control, ability to think abstractly, and perseverance. 

  • Motivation:Creative decisions demand that managers want to work on the project and make the decision.

Intuitive Decisions:

Intuitive decisions allow decision makers to make decisions quickly. The decisions are made based upon experience and observation. People see patterns from their experiences in previous situations and use these patterns to guide them in the decision-making process.  

The Control Process

  • Standards: Managers need to create plans and standards of measurement to gauge performance.

  • Measure: Once standards are established, measure performance regularly. Provide feedback.

  • Compare: Compare performance with the standards of measurement. Performance reports are an example of this comparison. 

  • Action: Take action to correct mistakes and guide performance such ascorrective action.

Words From the Wise:

SWOT Analysis

  • Strengths: These are internal characteristics that create a competitive advantage.

  • Weaknesses: Internal weaknesses that need to be improved such as turnover, sales, or operations are defined in this category.

  • Opportunities: Opportunities are external, and require managers to take advantage of them. They involve market trends and a strong economy.

  • Threats: External threats that companies cannot control and need to prepare for include a poor economy and changing demographics.

  • Steven Covey: Management works in the system; leadership works on the system.

  • H.S.M Burns: A good manager is a man who isn’t worried about his own career but rather the careers of those who work for him.

  • Robert Heller: Effective management always means asking the right question.

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