Part of being a great manager means understanding where your strengths and weaknesses lie. By figuring out your strong points, you can better utilize them to drive your team forward. By acknowledging your weaker points, you can work to strengthen them and improve. A great way to better understand yourself as a manager is to reflect and ask some key questions. Here are 5 of the top questions branch managers should ask themselves to jump-start their improvement:
Why did I choose this position?
This question gets down to purpose and meaning. It’s reflecting on why you chose the career and industry that you did. Articulating and understanding your “why” can be a great source of motivation, especially when things get challenging. Re-establishing your purpose can spur inspiration and help you better inspire your team. If you’ve been feeling less passionate about your position as a branch manager, this question can help you remember what drew you to the role in the first place and help you get back to a place of excitement and engagement.
How well do I know my employees?
Managers are responsible for guiding and facilitating the growth of their team. If an employee feels fulfilled and appreciated in their role, they’re more likely to feel invested in and connected to the branch. Managers have a lot to do with giving employees this sense of fulfillment. Check in with yourself to think about your relationships with your team members. Do you know their strengths and weakness, challenges they’ve tackled, and even some personal background? The more trust and understanding you have with your employees, the better you’ll be able to reach and motivate them. The more understanding you have, the better you’ll be able to help them develop goals to promote growth.
Who do I admire?
One question that can help you to grow in your career and to stay motivated is about your mentors or role models. Is there anyone you know personally or that you follow online who inspires you in your career? If you’re looking to supercharge your self-improvement, it’s helpful to observe those who have attained the success you desire. Adopt their habits, and see if they yield the same success for you. If you can communicate with them, ask questions about their experience and take advice when offered. Even something as simple as following a successful leader and reading their blog posts regularly can help branch managers find a source of motivation. While this is especially important for newer branch managers, all managers can benefit from having a mentor or source of inspiration, no matter how long they’ve been in the business.
Am I setting a good example for my team?
It’s helpful to look at how you demonstrate expectations to your team. Are you demonstrating the high level of performance and professionalism that you expect of them? Are you present in the office for them to see you in your day-to-day work? As a manager, you play a large role in setting the tone and expectations for the office. Your team will have much more respect for a manager who walks the walk as well as talks the talk. Think about your role in the branch from the perspective of your team members, and make sure you’re demonstrating the same standards you expect from them.
What are my goals?
Managers who want to grow and expand in their career should create goals regularly. This means creating both long- and short-term goals. You might ask yourself about what you hope to achieve by the end of the month and where you see yourself in 1, 5, 10, even 15 years from now? If you check in with yourself and don’t have any clearly articulated goals, it’s time to start setting your sights on achievement. With the busy schedule of a branch manager, it’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day. However, if you want to grow, you must set your sights beyond where you are now. Goals are the key to future success.
For branch managers, asking yourself the right questions can often spur motivation, inspiration, and improvement. Asking effective questions can help you improve performance in your own work and also help you better lead your team to success. Staying in tune with yourself and regularly checking in is a key practice if you want to maximize your potential as a manager.