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Reading 2

Management skills for a new management

Adapted by:
Mr. Javier Beltrn Gonzlez.
Mr. Antonio Cesar Jimnez Rodrguez.

In this reading we will see the skills that a manager must have, but first, lets make
a small clarification: the concept of management skills is very broad and it could
refer to a combination of special knowledge, deployed in its cognitive and
emotional dimensions that enrich the profile of executives having a better quality of
life in the organization they lead, solving problems, having a reality of the emerging
global economy, the theory of competencies, sector and market situations, etc..
As the director associates these skills, he makes it clear that the entire
organization works efficiently, remember the McGregors Theory X, which speaks
of skilled workers, managers, professionals committed to results for the
organization to generate knowledge and skills, interpersonal strengths and social
A manager needs to have the skills to lead, i.e. "guiding the talent and effort of
others to get the achievement of expected results, in other words, influencing their
performance and coordinating their individual and team effort" , as defined by
Garza Trevio. But it must also be done with quality, knowledge and innovation,
positive thinking, understanding feelings, interacting, sharing and learning, all these
factors, with the simple purpose of having a better quality of life. This information
is taken from different updated authors and researchers, which consider these
abilities as something fundamental to effective managerial work, simply in order to
prepare a better managerial program in their organization in order to have greater
Before starting the development of this reading it is important to answer three
different questions which will guide us to have a greater perspective of the
importance of the skills of a manager. Why?, What for? and How? To use
managerial skills, remember the presentation of the study session 2, in which we
mentioned ten skills that are of most relevance and importance, but now, we will
study them with approaches and criteria involved in the organization.
It is important to mention that the demand for knowledge and skills for a
managerial work to be effective can be as wide as you want, from aspects of
technology, work processes, markets, economic and political environment in which
the organization operates, including instruments to be used to direct, such as: the
indicators, capital management, sources of financing, among others, but most
importantly, a manager must have three skills identified by various authors, they

1. Technical dexterity; it refers to the capability to use the tools in a specific field,
as doctors do when performing their activity.
2. Human dexterity; this means being able to work with other people, either
individuals or groups, as well as understanding and motivating them.
3. Conceptual dexterity; it is the brainpower to coordinate all the interests in an
For this reason, we focus on the managerial skills of interpersonal relations, the
result of different works and research of specialists in the field. According to
Robbins, "The center of creative leadership estimates that more than half of
managers and administrators have any difficulty in relationships with people." A
survey by Fortune magazine. revealed that the major reason for the failure of
managers were their inadequate interpersonal skills. With this we show that it is
more likely to be managers with greater poverty in their interpersonal skills, than in
the lack of proper abilities when performing their own positions.
The self knowledge increases the possibilities to work with others, leading
subordinates, resolving possible conflicts, making changes, all these, are issues
that help to have better results in the organization.
In the first study session we saw the reading of Emotional Intelligence, in which
Goleman reaches the same conclusions, saying "now what matters is how we deal
with ourselves and with others." This is not to say that we ignore the training,
experience and knowledge, but wed rather reinforce them as they are a main
source in achieving adequate leadership in the organization as the manager has to
play the role of leading others through his authority, power and knowledge on how
to influence others.
Over the years and getting into twenty-first century, in the middle of globalization it
is important to emphasize that people must learn to work in teams and watch for
change adaptation, authors such as Mintzberg remark that, "the most successful
people are not the more intelligent or the most knowledgeable of the business, but
those who know how to work better with people, " it is knowing how to get results
through others, having this interpersonal skill, that greater benefits of information,
collaboration and performance of subordinates are produced rather than people
who are simply specialized in each of the areas.
As mentioned above, there is a huge list of skills of a manager, but here in this
passage it is not about a popularity list to see which is identified with each
manager, what we want is to make you see what are the skills that you as Bachelor
of International Business, can carry out without wasting time on inappropriate lists.
These skills are interrelated and act upon the system, simply produce results
qualitatively and quantitatively superior to what each can contribute individually to
form an integrated whole.
When a machine runs smoothly, it is because each and every one of its parts are
working together to get a product, so do the skills, we can say that a manager can

be a good communicator, but if he does not have a strategic approach, the impact
generated will be limited to be effective in managing the various conflicts that may
raise within their organization and the teamwork must listen and transmit ideas in a
convincing manner. On the other hand, he can conceive a vision and have
consistent strategies, but if he cannot lead and motivate his people, it will be
difficult to achieve results. What the manager should do is to have a continuous
communication and thus can exchange points of views at any time strengthening
the political and technical resources to decision making, promoting enthusiasm and
motivation among the people.
Finally we get to the list of skills, after a process described above.
1 - Strategic Management.
2 - Interpersonal Communications.
3 - Strategies and negotiation techniques.
4 - Conflict Management.
5 - Teamwork.
6 - Leadership and Motivation.
7 - Diagnosis of problems and decision making.
8 - Time management and delegation.
9 - Productive meetings.
10 - Management of change.
The whole process of management skills begins with management strategy and
ends with the management of change and being in a current state, it makes a
whole process to reach a desired formulated state in the strategy, which simply
that the two skills that are at the ends, start and end, are aimed at ensuring all
processes of interaction and motivation of employees of the organization to
achieve better results.
We will describe briefly, clearly and accurately each of these skills with the simple
purpose of clarifying the functions performed.
Management or Strategic Approach; is always going to act in the bond of the
organization with its environment by responding to the demands and opportunities
that can be identified, taking into account the threats that may cause difficulties in
fulfilling the mission and objectives of the organization, so the organization must
consider that the strategic approach is highly related to its strategic planning as the
task of producing certain satisfiers is a component of the strategy of the
organization .
Keep in mind that the main function of a strategic process is to plan the activities of
the organization so that the impact on the environment could be more effective and
could satisfy the current and future needs demanded. On the other hand recall the
definition of strategic management, which says: It is the process by which an
organization formulates objectives and is aimed at obtaining them.

Strategy is understood as the means for achieving the objectives of the

organization. And for a strategy there are two key points:
1) do what you do in a right way
2) and choose competitors that can be defeated, Analysis and Action.
A manager should be able to predict and anticipate the environmental external
factors that may create opportunities or threats for the organization. You must
perform a SWOT analysis of your organization related to your competition. Keep in
mind the vision aimed by your organization and every one of the objectives and the
way to achieve them, where to specify them, what, who, when and how things can
or cannot be done.
Interpersonal communications, a manager should keep in mind the full
knowledge of laws, principles and components of communication process.
Transmitter, receiver, message, medium, feedback, among others. It is
important to note that cultural differences significantly affect, for example, Asian
managers are generally less inclined to be open in the early stages of the
conversation and consider U.S. managers or Latino, a little brash and aggressive,
because they are more outgoing, according to (Whetten & Cameron). Language
patterns and structures of language between cultures may be substantially different
and remember that there is a considerable evidence that individuals are more
effective interpersonally and display a higher emotional intelligence when
recognized, appreciated and they capitalize these differences with others.
Negotiation skills: these abilities allow the manager to obtain better results, both
in their relations and exchange with environmental factors which may be
customers, suppliers or institutions. As well as internally in the organization making
the negotiation a way of living for the managers. When this ability is successfully
implemented, the manager is able to discover that they can interest the other party
and that can satisfy it with the least possible time and cost, in exchange for
something of greater value, creating strategies and tactics of how to use it for their
own benefit.
Getting positive results in each of the different situations that arise. Knowing
how to use an appropriate trading strategy, helps the manager to have a
panoramic view of the situation and it is usually classified into two broad
perspectives, integrative and distributive. Stated concisely, the prospects of
negotiation serve as a value or general attitude, supported by the adversaries, who
restrict their set of acceptable methods to resolve their differences and give
meaning to the results of the conflict resolution process.

Negotiators who focus on sharing a "Fixed pie" reflect the perspective of

distributive bargaining, while the parties use an integrated approach that looks at
ways of collaboration to expand the pie, avoiding fixed and incompatible positions,
according to (Bazerman and Neale). One way to think about this distinction is that
the distributive perspective focuses on the relative scores and individual for both
sides [A v B], while the perspective focuses on a combined score (A + B), therefore
distributive negotiators assume an adversarial and competitive posture, they
believe that a part can be improved only at the expense of the other party. In
contrast integrators negotiators use problem solving techniques to find results "winwin, they are interested in finding the best solution for both sides instead of
choosing between the preferred solutions of the parties. According to (Dreu, Koole,
and Steinel).

Conflict management, this ability provides the manager the chances to turn
conflict situations into opportunities to improve all work processes in the
organization as well as the relations between the members, it also helps to provide
the most effective strategy to deal with any conflict, such as, Coercion, Evasion,
Commitment, Complacency, Collaboration. These five methods of conflict
management help managers to avoid inappropriate confrontations, to the extent of
encouraging each group to get the best potential for them.
Teamwork, simply addresses all possible scenarios for the organization and sets
up the positions of individual or functional interests for the benefit of all the
members in the organization, as ants do, they work together to meet the needs of
the anthill, each has a different function, from the worker ants, soldiers, queen,
etc. Teamwork allows us to have a better organization and the results are seen
with the naked eye in a positive way. For example, effective teams have
interdependent members, such as geese, productivity and efficiency of a whole
unit are determined by the coordinated efforts of all interactive members.
Leadership and motivation. This consists of two skills closely linked. On the one
hand there is the leadership, which is responsible for motivating people to achieve
the vision, goals and objectives that the organization has proposed, remember that
there are several types of leadership, most notably, the authoritarian, paternalistic
democratic, participatory, and more. But on the other hand, the power to motivate
people requires the manager to be able to identify and interpret the factors that can
exert more influence on the people and to carry out the activities so peacefully and
attractive, as expressed in the theory expectations, which says "that the motivating
force of a person to make efforts depends on how strongly the individual believes
that he can get what he is trying to achieve, if this goal is achieved (performance)
he will be adequately remunerated by the organization and in this way he will have
the gratification of satisfying his individual goals.

We must emphasize that there is a difference between management and

leadership; according to Kotter, John P. leadership is defined as "the art or
process of influencing people to strive willingly and enthusiastically towards
achieving group goals. In theory, people should be encouraged to develop not only
a willingness to work, but also the desire to work with zeal and confidence. Bennis
argues that "Becoming a leader is not easy, nor a doctor or a poet, either, and
anyone who says otherwise is deluding himself. But learning to lead is much easier
than many of us could think, because each of us has capacities for leadership. In
fact, any of us can recognize some experience of leadership. "
Some differences that Bennis makes between leadership and management are
shown below.
The administrator (manager) administers, the leader innovates.
The manager maintains, the leader develops.
The manager accepts reality, the leader researches.
The manager focuses on systems and structures, the leader in people.
The management depends on the control, the leader inspires trust.
The manager asks how and when the leader what and why.
The manager does things right, the leader does the right things.
We think that if we combine both abilities we can have a prominent manager, who
is visionary, who can manage, who can be a leader and have the necessary
communication with every member of the organization, as the manager
demonstrates leadership and extrinsic motivation; the motivation carried out by
each person is called intrinsic motivation. In other words, a good manager should
be surrounded by people with intrinsic motivation and who promote extrinsic one.
Diagnosis of problems and decision making, in this skill the manager must
create the correct formulation of the problem, seek alternatives and make
appropriate decisions because it is the most important responsibility of every
manager, some authors note that decision making is the engine of business and in
fact, the success of any organization depends largely on the proper selection of
alternatives as its importance is determined in managerial positions with the help of
numerous techniques mainly based on mathematical tools and operations
research. When managers really share their power and authority in decisionmaking, active subordinates actively participate and help the manager to make
decisions, all participate in a meaningful way and decisions are taken as a group.
The manager decides on the basis of group consensus.
Time management and delegation, talking about efficiency, it means to adjust
working time within the organization of people, managing to get more done in less
time so, there are many techniques that managers can use with their employees
and get higher profits, (Cooper & Davidson), "hold routine meetings at the end of
the day, stand tall in the short meetings, set a time limit, start meetings on time,
read selectively, make a list of things you want to achieve today, have a place for
everything and keep everything in its place, prioritize your tasks, make only one

important thing at a time and many trivial things simultaneously, do not schedule
too many things in one day, have someone take calls and check email, have a
place for everything and everything in its place, among other suggestions. "
As considered in these suggestions, it is important to manage time within the
organization with the simple aim of optimizing resources, be more efficient and
effective in the work of the organization, this will also increase the productivity of
the organization and will head the services generated in the environment, as well
as being competitive. While the delegation helps to optimize time management and
the ability to trust on reliable people as the director of the organization however
small, cannot be everywhere, he should always have people to help implement and
monitor work in different places or areas of the organization.
Productive meetings. This ability goes hand in hand with the previous ones and
that like any good manager should always be in all meetings and cannot be left out
day after day, that is, no matter how small the meeting could be, they should be
done to report progress, potential problems expectations and achievements of
progress in each of the departments or areas of the organization. Some research
shows that in 70%, managers are in meetings and this leads to 15-20% of
spending budget is spent for meetings (Cooper & Davidson). As the director should
become a very skillful and conduct meetings more effectively for the benefit and
growth of the organization, saving time for the manager. There are numerous
techniques for developing successful meetings, highlighting 5PS of (Whetteh and
Cameron: Purpose, Participants, Plan, Participation and Perspective), the
interactive model of Doyle, among other techniques that can help managers
improve their meeting time and wastage.
Finally we get to this last skill that a manager must have, which is change
Change Management; while we are changing educational, technological, social,
cultural, organizations are not far behind, the changes are important in the
organization since the products or services are constantly changing, as noted by
Garza Trevio, " the boosting changes generated by globalization are creating a
company reorganization and the elements are: the market, competitive and
governmental costs, and In the market, there is a leveling of income per capita
among industrialized nations, in costs, there is a continuing effort to achieve
economies of scale without losing the flexible manufacturing strategy, the
governmental just means making a reduction of tariff barriers, to cite the example
of NAFTA free trade agreement between the United States, Mexico and Canada.
And finally competitive, is the continuous increase in the volume of world trade.
"Talking of Change Management involves numerous studies in articles, magazines,
books, etc.. which have taken decades of study and will continue to be studied,
because of the many changes taking place in the world in information,
communication and technology, so that managers should be aware that
environmental factors in which the organization is running will always be modifying,
so the manager must have the necessary skills to avoid running out of competition,

and the ability to manage people and make them understand that we should
always be in constant change and transformation of our work on behalf of the
A challenge appears to be insignificant, but it is still extremely important to provide
the necessary information quality, thoughtful, innovative, useful and timely
information to all members of the organization to be updated and avoid losing them
when establishing new working methods and models in the organization.
It is important to point that we should not be afraid of changes and unknown
situations because this fear could bring many problems, people must be curious,
exploratory, creative, in order to learn new things which can help us to improve our
life and work styles and achieve better relationships with the rest of the society.
Changes exist, ignorance remains , the difference is that people do change for its
own benefit, without fear of the unknown.

The most dangerous human

masses are those in whose
veins have been injected
the poison of fear ... fear of change."
Octavio Paz

Whetten, David A., Management Skills Development, Ed Pearson, Mexico, 2005.
ISBN: 970-26-0579-2.
Juan Jose Huerta, development of management skills, Ed Pearson, Mexico 2006,
ISBN 970-26-0737-X.
Rabouin Robert, Management skills for new management, Ed Pearson, Argentina,
2008 ISBN 978-987-615-058-3.