Whether it's the owner of a small business or a team leader with a department, the manager sets the tone in how a company does business. A poor manager can create more work than is accomplished and leave disgruntled clients and alienated employees in his wake. A good manager will build a team of workers who enjoy their jobs and want to stay with the company.

Ego in Check

A good manager realizes the company does not revolve around him. He doesn't have to be the smartest person in the room but recognizes his employees also have good ideas. While he needs to be clear about his authority, workers appreciate a boss who is willing to help unload a truck, take a turn at the assembly line or pitch in to answer phones. He also admits when he's wrong rather than trying to cast blame on an employee. A good manager can say he's successful when his workers don't notice he's there.


Rather than focusing on potential crises, a good manager turns problems around in search of possible solutions. The manager sees these as opportunities. Because of this, he's more interested in solutions than problems. Rather than running an operation where everything seems urgent, a good manager takes proactive steps to address any situation before it reaches a crisis stage. Clients also appreciate a solutions-oriented manager; they're not interested in the problems.

Communications From the Manager

Good managers communicate their expectations to their employees without leaving room for guesswork. Objectives are clear, and employees feel they're in the loop. The best managers can confront a worker, telling him where he needs to improve his performance without bruising any feelings.

Communications To the Manager

On the other hand, a good manager is willing to listen to her employees. She gets to know her workers, knows their strengths and weaknesses, and can tell when they're discontented without a word being said. Workers trust a good manager and feel they can raise their concerns without worrying about being branded as troublemakers.

Values the Crew

A good manager stands behind her troops' actions in public. Even if she needs to correct a recalcitrant worker, she will not demean the worker in front of clients or other employees. A good manager expects the best from her employees but knows how to bring this performance out. The best managers treat their workers with respect but still hold them accountable for doing their jobs well.