Supervisors play a key role in the organization. They are also the emerging leaders for future advancement. Leaders see developing supervisors as a key role in the success of the organization.
THE JOB IS TOUGH
Leaders recognize that a line supervisor is one of the toughest jobs out there. Emerging leaders deal with everything from personnel issues to operational requirements. It is a thankless never ending battle in some organizations.
GIVE THEM THE TOOLS FOR SUCCESS
Leading supervisors requires several crucial skills
Start here. To lead a supervisor it is critical to understand the challenges a supervisor must endure. Mirror your supervisors frequently to understand the daily challenges. Document those challenges and work with your management teams to break the walls.
EXPLORE EMPLOYEE EMPOWERMENT
Supervisors should not be making minute to minute daily decisions for the workforce. This is a recipe for disaster. Build systems that allow the workforce to think on it’s own.
SHIFT THE TRADITIONAL ROLE
Supervisors should be developed into the next level of leadership. The best way to accelerate that development is to incorporate them into all levels of the business. Work to shift supervisor responsibilities into ‘an auditing role’. Help to build a standard work model for the supervisor to create a daily pace. Allow your staff to assign non-traditional roles to the supervisors; not only help with development for future leadership but create outside the box thinking. Frequently remind supervisors that their most important role is to SERVE the workforce not command it.
We will be doing a blog on DISC soon. The assessment offers valuable insight into workforce relationships and interaction. This is a great tool for supervisors to use to get the most out of direct reports.
Create an environment where frequent evaluations are the norm. Not only should supervisors get allotted time to evaluate their staff, but open communication should be the norm between the supervisor and the leader.
FORMALIZE THE SUPERVISOR TRAINING
Each organization has cultural goals and production expectations. It is critical to ensure that the organization builds effective supervisor training that illustrates expectations and the ‘how to accomplish’ those goals. Create interactive workshops as part of your training and have them frequently.
Leaders should spend time on the floor and act quickly to determine if supervisors are adding value to the shop floor. If not, do not wait to consult developing leaders.
SUPPORT THEIR DECISIONS
In order to grow, supervisors will make bad decisions. Coach through those decisions and let the supervisor CORRECT the mistakes. Undermining the inherent authority of the position will weaken the role and create opportunities for disrespect to the supervisor role. Encourage humility from the supervisory staff.