Communication

Writing to reach below-average readers

March 1, 2004
Even if you’re a face-to-face manager, written communication with your people is a major part of your team leader’s toolbox. But what if your team members, for whatever reason, aren’t very good readers? Here are some techniques to consider:

Stay above fray when workers fight

March 1, 2004
It’s one thing to have an open-door policy and welcome input — including complaints — from your people. It’s another to get caught up in every dispute between your team members.

What is morale made of? Some specific strategies

March 1, 2004
Most of us recognize good or bad morale when we see it, but what is morale made of? It’s a combination of attitudes that employees hold about their jobs, their workplaces, their managers, and the rewards they receive.

Serving customers via e-mail: How to send a message

February 1, 2004
The explosion of electronic mail has changed the way we communicate with customers — and not always for the better.

Help workers ask for what they need

January 1, 2004
Every manager’s dealt with demanding and unreasonable employees. But every manager’s also dealt with workers whose demands are reasonable — but who are afraid to ask the boss (that’s you) for what they need. Here are some ways you can help:

Practice the four R’s of ‘power listening’

January 1, 2004
Power listening is listening with empathy, putting yourself in the other person’s shoes, and responding with what you understand the other person has said. The best way to become a power listener is to develop the specific skills of active listening, especially the “four R’s”:

Set meeting agendas that work

January 1, 2004
A well-prepared agenda can make all the difference in making meetings productive. Some pointers:

Leading Teams: Enforcing policies you don’t like

January 1, 2004
No managers like to enforce policies they don’t support themselves. But doing so is an essential skill for team leaders.

Managing workplace conflict wisely

June 1, 2003
Conflict resolution may be the single most common supervisory task faced by managers and team leaders. Here’s some proven advice to help you create a team that moves forward and can manage its own conflicts.

How to tell team to rework a project

November 1, 2000
It’s difficult to tell solid performers that their hard work on a project isn’t quite good enough. How do you ask team members to take another crack at a project without demotivating them?