As a manager you have a certain amount of responsibility to inspire awareness in your employees in the following areas:
• their personal reputation in the organization,
• their profile and network within organization, and
• career development opportunities available to them.
At times this type of commitment to employees requires you to have difficult conversations, but it can also lead to one of the most rewarding aspects of being a manager – playing a part in your employee’s career success and ultimately your own.
It can be very rewarding to look back on your career and know that in some small way you have been instrumental in supporting an employee to navigate their career successfully. Building a reputation as a manager that builds careers significantly increases your ability to attract and retain top talent.
As a manager, encourage your employees to be clear about:
• His or her reputation within, and value to, the organization
• How to build his or her reputation through contacts in the organization
• Why and how to seek opportunities that best match his or her aspirations, ability and engagement
Brand awareness and consistency
It is amazing how many managers will see a particular employee as a high performer and rising star, yet that same employee is seen in a completely different light by their team and other managers and employees across the organization. This not only hurt the employee, but risks the managers’ reputation and credibility.
As a leader, the more you can help your employees understand their brand and adapt if necessary, the more self-aware they become which enables further career dialogue and planning.
Giving feedback involves providing information to an individual that makes him or her aware of how their brand is perceived. Your feedback should be constructive. It should build up, develop, create insights, and improve your employee’s understanding of how they are perceived within the organization.
The key to giving and receiving constructive feedback is to:
• Maintain a spirit of mutual respect and learning
• Reflect equality, not superiority (position and power creates barriers)
• Voice non-judgmental observations regarding behavior, not conclusions about personality traits or attributes
• Create ownership over the impact of the actions
• Build trust over the long term through ongoing honest conversations