A Manager’s Job is Driven by Distraction

 In Blog, Educational Issues

Managers are like sergeants in the army. Officers set the direction but sergeants supervise getting the actual work done.  In the course of an average day, a manager’s time is usually chopped up by many distractions: changes, interruptions, phone calls, emergencies, and so on.  For someone who wants to get “the task” done, these distractions can be discouraging.  It can make you angry or stressed if you let it.  What you need to realize is that much of your “task” may be handling these interruptions rather than doing some other type of work.

As a true manager you most important job is to be available to handle brief and short-term needs of your people.  Even the actual jobs assigned to you like paperwork are generally to support your people.  In a sense your job is to be available for interruptions while doing routine work while you wait.  This may sound odd, but remember that managers are not supposed to be doing the basic work.  They’re supposed to deal with their people, be available to support, reinforce, coach, etc.

Another distraction can be your interface with your boss.  As a manager, you are in the middle between your people and your superiors. Part of your job is reporting to them and passing on their orders.  But you also have to serve as an insulator so your people aren’t distracted from their jobs by the chain of command.  Whether from below or above, define distraction as a big part of your job and it will help you relax and do all parts of your job better.

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