Managing Up, Down & Around A Tip From The Manager’s Answer Book

Someone asked us the following question recently: In The Manager’s Answer Book you talk about managing up, down and around. I understand managing down is managing your team. What do managing up and managing around mean and do you have any advice on how managers can do this?  

Manager’s Tip:  Managing up refers to understanding your boss’s position, goals and responsibilities and working to help your manager achieve those goals. Observe your manager and get to know her so you understand her priorities, her communication style, and what she values personally and professionally. Understand the role she sees you taking in the department and then set out to perform your job in the most efficient and effective manner so you can contribute to the department’s success. 

Managing around or across the organization means understanding the organization and how it works – how information flows, what other functions and departments do and how your team can support them  Managing across requires political savvy and this is where curiosity comes in. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and build collaborative relationships outside your own department. Managing across is the ability to influence others, especially the actions of others, when you don’t have any organizational authority over them. Finally, managing around means understanding and honoring the processes and policies that other departments have in place. They exist for a reason.

You can read more in The Manager’s Answer Book. Section Five is devoted to “Managing Up, Down and Around” the organization, and the discussion starts on page 135.  The Manager’s Answer Book, is available from Amazon -- - Barnes & Noble or your local independent bookstore.

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