What Makes A Great Manager?

What Makes A Great Manager?

Part 1

by JJ Lynch

What does make a great manager?

We all want our managers to show initiative, take responsibility, make decisions, give difficult messages, and be able to make people feel good about themselves.

Easier said than done.

Over the next ten weeks we will explore what makes a great manager – and share with you many of the key messages, tips and techniques from our highly acclaimed two-day programme The Highly Effective Manager. 

So what does a really good manager look like?

Confident? Calm? Approachable? Professional?

Richard Hall, author of The Secrets of Success At Work says:

You just don’t have to walk like a manager,
you must also think like a manager,
and not just think like one,
but also look as if you are thinking.

Activity 1

The Qualities Of A Great Manager

An outstanding manager evokes possibility in others.

Look at the 14 qualities below and select your top 7 qualities (of a great manager):

sense of humour
inspires confidence
committed to excellence

Now reduce your seven qualities to three

Now select your TOP QUALITY.

This is a very subjective exercise – there are no right or wrong answers. However, a quite fascinating pattern emerges when we do this exercise with different cultures.

Recently while working with 30 managers from China who were visiting the UK for management training, we divided the group into five groups of 6. They all went off into separate break-out rooms, reduced their qualities to seven, then three, then one. When all five groups returned to the main training room, they all had selected the same No.1 quality – decisive.

When working with delegates from the Middle East (Qatar, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia) 90% of the time the No.1 quality selected is – honesty.

And when working in the UK with groups predominantly made up of UK delegates 95% of the time the No.1 quality is – inspires confidence.

(When you are confident, calm, approachable and professional you will inspire confidence). 

Have you spotted the quality among the 14 listed above that is NOT a quality?

(Answer is at the bottom).

To get in touch, email us at:


Tel: 01727 898332

Click here to download our full training brochure.

(Leading Edge Leadership work with leaders and managers at all levels in a range of businesses and organisations who are leaders in their field.)


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