Everybody has this idea of a manager in their head. They usually envision the head of a company or department to be a strong person, one who people are scared of, and who makes important decisions. As a manager though, your role will differ greatly from how most people see it.
There are many myths about managers perpetuated by the media and rumors that circle around. Here are four of the most popular.
1. Managers get other people to do their jobs
People imagine a company manager as somebody who goes around all day looking over the shoulders of their staff. They believe once you start work as a manager, your only job is to, well, manage. Contrary to popular belief, managers do actually have their own tasks to do. These tasks range from small administrative jobs to large organizational projects.
The truth is, a career in management requires you to take on two responsibilities. You have to finish your own tasks, as well as ensure your staff finish theirs. No wonder it's so hard to hire a manager. At least no one said achieving great productivity was easy.
2. Managers prefer reports, documents and well-presented letters
Some have this impression of managers that they're too formal. They believe anybody in one of the numerous management jobs around the country prefers everything to be done in an official, calculated way. While that may be so for some managers, it's only because of personal choice. Truth is, managers are just as happy to receive emails and phone calls if they effectively convey information.
Administration jobs, unsurprisingly, involve lots of administration. When a manager requires official communication, it's usually only because company policy dictates it should be that way, or they're worried that further problems could arise later down the line making this type of communication more important.
3. Being a manager involves being completely scientific
Manager jobs come with a lot of responsibility. There's a huge amount of pressure on the manager of a company to produce results, a pressure which affects their decision making. Because of this pressure, managers do try to take a scientific approach when necessary. Executive jobs are about more than just numbers though. A manager must first work out which form of action to take, and why, and then convince staff to follow along.
Art and people skills are as much a part of management as scientific analysis of workers. Management jobs articles detailing what it takes to be a manager will be able to detail and can help you understand the role further.
4. It's hard to become a manager
While there is some truth to this myth, often times people use it as an excuse not to pursue their dream job. If you want to work in management, getting a job is not just possible but likely if you put your mind to it. If you have the skills and experience, it's simply a matter of knowing how to search jobs in management. If you don't have the skills, or believe yours are rusty, your goal should be to learn how to become a manager.
Most managers started from the bottom and worked their way up. While some might have gotten their job because of contacts, many got theirs through effort alone.
If you want to be a manager or know somebody who already is, hopefully these debunked myths will allow you to understand the management role more clearly. When companies figured out how to hire a manager, they did so by cutting through the stereotypes and searching for an employee with the skills needed to advance the organization.
A manager's role isn't restrained by these old-fashioned stereotypes. Most bring a modern approach to their job in order to connect with staff and achieve objectives.