What’s the secret sauce to being a great manager?

Ryan SmithManaging DirectorPosted January 18, 2022

Communication  is crucial to being an effective manager, but it certainly isn’t the only trait. Don’t get me wrong; I don’t think there is some secret recipe, life hack, or formula that adds up to being an effective manager. Still, from my experience of more than ten years in a management role, there are certain traits and qualities a great manager possesses.

From my vantage point, the essential trait is caring for people. At the young age of 18, I worked as a closing night manager at Taco Bell. I was striving to do what was best for my teammates and their passions. At that stage of my life, I wasn’t nearly as focused or passionate about the growth and development of my team, but I was always sensitive to their needs and wants. Not only was that important as a manager, but it was important to me and who I am on the inside.

Regardless of the mission or end goal, if you’re leading a team towards the finish line, they need to know you care about them and their contributions. Caring about their aspirations, goals, development, and emotional wellbeing has always been part of my DNA. I believe that my  internalpassion for people and personal development  led me to various leadership roles, increased levels of responsibility, and people management. My path ultimately landed me in my current and most personally rewarding role to date as the Managing Director at  Agility Partners

While caring for people has made me a great manager, there is no one-way path to succeeding. For some, this means being an effective coach that focuses on input and output. For others, this could mean leading with positivity and visualizing company goals. For me, it's always been my passion for people. That's my secret sauce. What's yours?

Ryan Smith Ryan is our Managing Director at Agility Partners. He oversees our sales and recruitment teams, working to be the most effective and productive partners within the IT employment solutions space.