Google, the king of search engines, recently set out on a search of its own—to identify the qualities that make the highest- quality managers at Google Inc., and then to replicate those qualities across the entire company.
Being Google, it first looked at data. According to a New York Times report, a “people analytics” team compared correlations in the words and phrases that came up again and again in performance reviews, feedback surveys and recognition nominations.
The end result: A simple, yet elegant, list of eight management practices that the best Google managers consistently do. Some are obvious, but all serve as a good reminder of what an effective manager should be doing on a daily basis:
Here’s the list, in order of importance to Google:
- Be a good coach.
- Empower your team and don’t micromanage.
- Express interest in team members’ success and personal well-being.
- Be productive and results-oriented.
- Be a good communicator and listen to your team.
- Help your employees with career development.
- Have a clear vision and strategy for the team.
- Have key technical skills so you can help advise the team.
3 common pitfalls
Google also identified three common pitfalls that its managers often run into:
- Have trouble transitioning into management.
- Lack a consistent approach
- Spend too little time managing