Lee's blog: How Do You Manage?

clock Released On 21 May 2024

Lee's blog: How Do You Manage?

A recent prompt from senior management to make sure we are keeping up with training and development hours found me on a relatively quiet afternoon scrolling through our library of online courses in an effort to chip away at the required hours, top up my coffee and of course do some learning!

I came across a course on management behaviour with an opening quiz on discovering your management style. It was reminding me ever so slightly of those A, B or C quizzes from the Just Seventeen magazines of my misspent youth. I love these types of quizzes and I was not disappointed – 7 minutes of ticking boxes and I am officially categorised as “a mix”!

This mildly annoys me at first as I am naturally happier when things can be neatly categorized, and definitive answers given – it’s the accountant in me I can’t help it!

On reflection though it’s not wrong- different days, different teams and different projects often demand different presentations of myself.  I feel in work my authentic style leans towards democratic coaching, and I would have cringed if somebody described me as autocratic or transactional. The nuance to this learning however was its focus on how you can be a mix and adaptable without being unauthentic – you can bring people along with you, know when to make the tough call and know when to let people do things their own way. The true strength of this is in the application of the mix of styles to your situation – autocratic when I need to be sounds much more palatable now!

Satisfied with my afternoon of self-reflective learning I signed off from my day job to be immediately faced with a requirement to immediately demonstrate every single style in a rotation for the evening for two very demanding stakeholders:

  • Autocratic when planning time away from the house, shopping lists, all of the must do to get out the door for school actions.
  • Democratic when deciding on what tv show to watch or which toys to take in the bath – you have to let them feel empowered I am told!
  • Coaching when doing homework – this can sometimes slip into bribery which is not a classic management style but is known to be effective!
  • Laissez Faire when the third episode of Bluey rolls on and neither of them have moved a muscle since it started!
  • Servant leadership when it comes to the snacks, all of the snacks the endless supply of snacks.
  • Pacesetter all of the time otherwise my kids would be eternally 5 minutes away from putting on their shoes.
  • Bureaucratic when it’s put on your pyjamas, brush your teeth, turn off the light – tick, tick, tick!
  • Visionary when I set out the plans for the next day!

So how do I manage it – possibly by being all of the managers all at once all of the time!


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