Leaders & Managers

From the nitty gritty of daily management to addressing your aspirations of leadership, this section for leaders & managers tells you how to make strong leadership decisions, build effective teams, delegate and stay above the everyday management muddle.

Get tips, strategies, tool and advice on: performance reviews, preventing workplace violence, best-practices leadership, team building, leadership skills, people management and management training.

Generally, you don't mind conducting semiannual reviews in the claims-processing department you supervise, except when Cassidy comes in with her tired old complaints about how everyone else gets an easier ride ...
We've said many times that the first step in an effective performance management process is developing a performance plan for each employee. And you know you should involve your employees in setting the specific work goals that make up that plan.

Merchandise motivates sales staff more than cash because it offers "trophy value," a constant reminder of the achievement, says a new Incentive Federation survey of executives from small and large businesses.

"That's the last straw. You're fired."

You may have said those words yourself, but unless you've correctly documented the fired employee's "earlier straws," you may be opening up yourself for a lawsuit.

Maintaining a performance file or log may sound time-consuming, but the time is well worth it at the end of an employee's review period. Rather than relying on memory, you can refer to a long list of concrete examples. Evaluating performance becomes as easy as adding up the numbers.

For many U.S. taxpayers, "March Mad-ness" has nothing to do with college basketball. It's all about dashing around gathering receipts, filling out forms, meeting with your tax guru and hoping you'll emerge victorious in the 1040 game.

This year is a good time to review your overall safety program, especially if your accident and injury rates haven't dropped in recent years.

Manufacturing companies welcomed news last month that the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) plans to thoroughly review and modernize the rules that regulate manufacturing.

Rather than training employees on 'soft skills,' it's best to hire people who already exhibit them. But determining an applicant's soft skills—such as personal accountability and a strong work ethic—is an inexact science.

Ask people who report to you to identify the greatest frustrations they face on the job.