Three Skills You Need To Become an Effective Manager

Researchers have identified a

number of skills that differentiate effective from ineffective managers.

Technical Skills

Technical skills encompass the ability to apply specialized

knowledge or expertise. When you think of the skills of professionals such as civil

engineers or oral surgeons, you typically focus on the technical skills they have

learned through extensive formal education. Of course, professionals don’t have

a monopoly on technical skills, and not all technical skills have to be learned

in schools or other formal training programs. All jobs require some specialized

expertise, and many people develop their technical skills on the job.

Human Skills

The ability to understand, communicate with, motivate,

and support other people, both individually and in groups, defines human

skills . Many people are technically proficient but poor listeners, unable

to understand the needs of others, or weak at managing conflicts.

Because managers get things done through other people, they must have

good human skills.

Conceptual Skills

Managers must have the mental ability to analyze and diagnose

complex situations. These tasks require conceptual skills . Decision making,

for instance, requires managers to identify problems, develop alternative

solutions to correct those problems, evaluate those alternative solutions, and

select the best one. After they have selected a course of action, managers must

be able to organize a plan of action and then execute it. The ability to integrate

new ideas with existing processes and innovate on the job are also crucial conceptual

skills for today’s managers.


Sources: Robbins, S. P., & Judge, T. (2013). Organizational behavior. Boston: Pearson.