The Power Dynamics of Effective Team Management
Tips for building collaborative relationships with your team as a manager
As a team manager, you hold a unique position of authority that comes with a certain degree of power imbalance vis-à-vis your team. This power imbalance can create challenges in communication and collaboration with your team, particularly if you are new to management or have not yet fully accepted the reality of your role.
Being a manager is not an extension of a previous role.
It can be easy to fall into the trap of believing that your position as a team manager is simply an extension of your previous technical role, where relationships with team members may have been more equal.
However, the truth is that as a manager, you have the power to make decisions that affect your team members' careers.
This transition from a technical role to management can create a strain on relationships with team members, particularly if you are not fully aware of the power dynamics at play.
It's not uncommon for new managers to be taken aback when team members begin to keep things from them, as they become less informed than they were previously. To overcome these challenges and improve communication and collaboration with your team, it's important to recognize and address the power dynamics at play. Consider the following strategies:
Avoid monopolizing team discussions. By refraining from being the first to contribute, you can create an environment that values diverse perspectives and leverages the collective wisdom of your team.
Leaders eat last, therefore let your team members speak first.
Actively invite input from your team members. Some team members may feel hesitant to contribute to discussion. Maybe that’s because they expect their manager to drive the conversation, or think they don’t have anything valuable to add.
You can create a more inclusive environment by inviting your team members to speak up. It’s simple.
Be intentional in your actions and comments. As a manager, your words and actions can set the tone for the team. Take care to be thoughtful in your approach to avoid unintended consequences that may negatively impact team morale.
Remember that video when the teacher takes a deep breath before they enter the classroom. That.
Build trust with each team member. While the inherent power imbalance cannot be completely removed, building trust can create a more transparent and approachable environment.
While building trust is obvious, it has to be stated all over again. It’s importance must not be neglected.
Empower team members by delegating decision-making responsibilities. By doing so, you can mitigate power imbalances and foster a culture of collaboration that grows the skill sets of your team members.
Effective team management is a continuous process that requires ongoing effort and attention. While the strategies outlined above can help address the power dynamics at play, there are countless other approaches that can be taken. Experienced managers understand this reality and are constantly adapting their approaches to suit the needs of their team.
For those new to management, the challenge lies in accepting and adapting to the dynamics of their new role. It may be difficult, but it is essential to prepare for the reality of making decisions based on the power of your position.
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