Leadership Skills For Savvy Middle Managers, Part 2 - February 2, 2018

Mid-level managers hold an important role in companies because they serve as the conduit between employees and top management. They must share, articulate and practice the leaders' vision yet motivate, encourage and develop employees to reach maximum results.

Yesterday, Promotional Consultant Today shared the P.E.R.S.U.A.D.E. model to train middle managers to be more effective in managing up. Today, we share a model for managing down: I.N.S.P.I.R.E. Both models were developed by business authors Karin Hurt and David Dye, who co-wrote Winning Well: A Manager's Guide to Getting Results Without Losing Your Soul.

Managing Down: I.N.S.P.I.R.E.

Middle managers can use this model to inspire behavioral change and deepen engagement among those they lead:

I: Initiate. Initiate tough conversations respectfully. Establish respect by asking your employee for a convenient time to talk an issue through.

N: Notice. Share your concern or observation without judgment or emotion. Address only one concern at a time. Even if you have more than one issue to discuss, letting loose with a tirade of complaints will be counterproductive.

S: Specific. Provide specific, supporting details about what you've observed. How, exactly, did their behavior deviate from your expectations? Be concise.

P: Probe. Ask what happened. Give them a chance to explain why they behaved the way they did. Seek understanding.

I: Invite. Invite them to develop their own solution to the issue. If they can't, provide suggestions for how they can improve. Co-create a path forward.

R: Review. Ask an open-ended question to check for understanding and a closed-ended question to secure commitment. This can be as simple as, "How would your experience at work change with this new approach?" and "Do you commit to this approach, going forward?"

E: Enforce. Make it clear how important the behavioral change is, why it's important to your shared work and why you are confident that they're capable of improving. After all, if they don't think you believe they can improve, they won't believe it either.

Source: Karin Hurt and David Dye are the award-winning authors of Winning Well: A Manager's Guide to Getting Results Without Losing Your Soul. Hurt is a top leadership consultant and CEO of Let's Grow Leaders. A former Verizon Wireless executive, she was named to Inc. magazine's list of great leadership speakers. Dye is a former executive and elected official, and president of Trailblaze, Inc., a leadership training and consulting firm.

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