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I’m honored to have been asked to present my thoughts on being a great (not just good) people manager to a marketing agency. One of the first moves I made when building my presentation was to interview a slew of managers and managees to get their perspectives on what makes a successful manager. With0ut diving into all the information I’ll be sharing, I thought it worthwhile to call out the two most common and significant characteristics of a great people manager that I ran across in those discussions.


“I don’t want to feel like a task” was a sentiment shared by nearly all the people I spoke with. Bottom line is that people can tell when you’re not 100% into something. Especially when that “something” involves a person’s career growth. The best managers out there are the ones who care, plain and simple. And while you can’t necessarily manufacture “caring”, you can certainly work on recognizing its importance.


At the end of the day, your ability to adapt to different situations will ultimately decide your success as a people manager. People are different in every way possible and that will never change, so it’s up to you to be flexible in your interactions. Too often I hear people complain about a subordinate or colleague being a certain way, as opposed to working on how best to approach that person based on the personality and communication style they have presented.


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Growth obsessed startup co-founder (MusicBox) and strategist-for-hire.

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