Understand how to lead and manage a team
Learning outcome 1
The way that individuals and teams are managed and led will impact both positively and negatively on the performance of an organisation. Effective management can be viewed as the achievement of an organisation’s objectives through the performance of its people; therefore if managers are seeking to achieve results through people, it is vital that they think carefully about the way they manage them. Managing individual and team performance within the management role requires a holistic approach in setting performance measures that will highlight the crucial links between individual and team performance and the development of an ...view middle of the document...
To achieve the highest levels of performance it is critical that people perform at the highest level of their ability and potential and the key to all progress and success is being able to lead, manage and enable people to do just this.
Managers will tend to focus their attention and energies on the roles they play and in the events that occur in multiple decision-making processes, whereas leaders focus more on how these events and decisions will affect people. Good managers are able to plan, organise, delegate, direct and control the resources they have to achieve improved performance and in doing so they tend to follow the formal policies, rules and procedural regulations of the organisation that employs them, and in this sense it can often be better termed as administration. Leadership is more about 'showing the way'; giving a sense of direction, although managers can sometimes misunderstand this; interpreting ‘directing’ as always having to tell people what to do, when, where and how to do it, but not always why; and thereby only gaining compliance rather than a true commitment. Although effective management enables people to understand information and instructions, leadership is more about influencing and inspiring people; not by ordering and controlling but by stimulating creativity and imagination. Moreover, leaders not only influence people towards an objective, they create the desire in people to want to achieve it. In short, as Warren Bennis says “managers do things right, while leaders do the right things” and leaders, in the truest sense and as David Gilbert-Smith claims “win the hearts and minds of people to achieve a common purpose” thus achieving higher levels of individual and team performance.
Performance management is open to a number of different interpretations, denoting a system whereby the level of intervention remains more towards the employees’ level, with the overall intention of aligning individual performance with organisational performance. Understanding an organisation or a team also requires an understanding of the individuals within that team; yet even today, more than a century after the emergence of 'scientific management theory', the way individuals are managed in many organisations remains far removed from the core principles of early and more enlightened management theorists. Fredrick Taylor (1856–1915), although more focused on the managers' role in improving productivity, defined the true objective of management as being the maximum prosperity of both owner and employee and that the former should not necessarily be at the expense of the latter
A model that highlights the differences in how individuals and teams are managed was first developed by Douglas McGregor in the 1960’s and is still used today in the field of performance management. Although criticised for its apparent rigidity and two-dimensional nature, Theory X and Theory Y remains a valid tool in understanding the impact of...