What Makes a Great Manager?

What Makes a Great Manager?

Vivian has been a member of the TrainerTainment team since 2016. Her graphics expertise makes us look good! Viv is also a wonderful coach and trainer. Her coaching strength lies in the fact that she is completely client-centered. When working with a sales team, for instance, she’s the kind of coach that jumps in and helps research leads in a specific community. She’s kind and always inspires others in a very positive way. I know you’ll see what I mean as you walk through her blog and learn what she believes makes a good manager. – Beth Standlee
Coaching and Training have taught me that being a great manager encompasses quite a lot. I recently discussed with someone who was just promoted what made a manager great. We both came away learning not only what a great manager is, but how important it is to listen to team members.

Each person brings a unique management style. It’s important for managers to lead effectively, without the drama, so everyone can listen and do what they are asked to do. Listening and being respectful to your team is critical.

Here are the top 10 things we thought were most important.

  1. Setting Goals. Set goals on a yearly basis. This will keep you and your team on track and provide measurable results and data to use for the coming years. Make sure you make them SMARTER (Specific, Measurable, Action-Oriented, Relevant, Enthusiastic, Risky) Goals
  2. Identify Distractors. Try to identify anything that could potentially distract team members from the goal at hand and help remove those things that are obstacles in their growth. Distractors could be personal or business-related but finding what is holding them back and removing those obstacles will allow teams to flourish. It could be too much administrative work, unrealistic expectations in the sales team, wearing too many hats… focus on what the main goals are.
  3. Give Frequent Feedback and Praise. Don’t wait for an annual review to give feedback and praise. Frequent feedback helps your team grow and develop strong skills. Let them know they are doing a great job or what needs improvement.
  4. Leverage Skills and Knowledge. Know your strengths and weaknesses as well as your team’s. Make sure everyone is doing the right job & is sitting in the right seat.
  5. It’s Okay to Not Know an Answer. When you don’t have an answer to a question, it’s best to acknowledge it and find the answer. Saying things like, “That’s a great question. Let me get back to you on that,” is a great response. The team will be better off knowing that, although you may not have an answer to everything, you can find an answer. Be timely with those answers.
  6. Clear Communication. Be straightforward and clear with your directions. Sometimes we think something is easy or everyone should know how to do it and sometimes they don’t know. They will appreciate clear, direct instructions and it will save you a lot of time in the long run. Clarity creates the ability to have accountability.
  7. Have Empathy and Lots of Patience. To be an effective manager, you need empathy and patience. Empathy allows you to better understand and relate to each team member. Patience allows you to give people the room to perform.
  8. Pay Attention. Pay attention to your team members, even if they aren’t speaking directly to you. Keep up with the dates they put on the team calendar, look at their schedules, and take note of their work. Acknowledge their personal circumstances. Give praise when praise is due.
  9. Empowering Your Team. When you empower your team, you help grow leaders within your business. If you’re constantly micromanaging, they’ll never develop the experience to tackle problems on their own. If you empower them to go beyond their role, they’ll face challenges that will further sharpen their skills and allow them to grow.
  10. Get in the Trenches. Constantly refine your processes. In order to better understand your team and customers, it is helpful to answer the phones and get right into the mix with your sales and operations teams. Getting to know their obstacles and learning more about customers helps you make better decisions and identify areas for improvement.
5 Star Cleaning Workshop

5 Star Cleaning Workshop

Sonya TerrySonya Terry comes to TrainerTainment after more than 16 years in the laser tag industry as a trainer, general manager and area manager in Texas for Leisure Entertainment Corporation of Canada. The company’s Laser Quest is one of the first manufacturers and operators of laser tag arenas. Sonya has extensive experience in training and motivating young, first-time workers in the amusement industry, which is one of TrainerTainment’s specialties.

Hello welcome to the 5 Star Cleaning process. Cleanliness has always been important, but we all know that is a major focus now. The 5 Star Cleaning Workshop will cover these 5 important areas:

Awareness … Looking at things with fresh eyes, and in a different way.
Hygiene… Personal responsibility to not spread germs, by washing your hands frequently throughout the day.
Product… Use the correct products in the correct places every time.
Sanitation… Committed to the sanitizing surfaces employees and customers frequently touch.
Visibility… Communication and commitment to all. Are you communicating your commitment to your customers do you let them know that safety is a top priority in their center.

You can utilize this 5 Star Cleaning Workshop to ensure that you and you team are ready for business!! Sign up for our newsletter below and immediately receive the link to download the complete workshop package, which includes the training PowerPoint, Cleaning Checklist, and a Certificate of Completion.


There Is So Much Talent Out There

There Is So Much Talent Out There

Marlies is organized, thorough, and a joy to work with. She’s been with the TrainerTainment team since 2017. As a professional Executive Assistant, she keeps us all on track. The value she provides our customer through recruiting and hiring is immeasurable. Marlies helped place more than 30 Sales Managers, General Managers, and other leadership roles in the Family Entertainment space in 2019 alone! When Marlies is on the job, it is easy to expect excellence, enthusiasm, and appreciation for a job well done!
Finally, we are approaching a point in this COVID-19 crisis when we can see some light at the end of the tunnel. Our social and economic society is seriously impacted by this crisis. At least now, most states are allowing their businesses to reopen with limited capacity and everyone is wondering what new normal will look like. Many think we are off to a slow start bringing our economy back to life. While some businesses have been able to sustain themselves during these rough times through financial reserves and federal aids, other businesses have been less fortunate.

Life lessons teach us positive comes with the negative. In a recent TrainerTainment Peer Talk, one FEC owner reported that in his trade area alone there were 8,000 employees in the hospitality and FEC industry laid off and only 6,000 were projected to be needed for reopening. The other 2,000 employees will be out of work for good and will have to look for new employment. So, where’s the positive in the fact that 25% of people have lost their job in this area?

The positive is that there is tremendous talent with highly skilled and experienced people out there, waiting to get back into the workforce. Businesses can draw from a pool of job seekers who know the tools of their trade, who are self-starters, and who are ready to jump in to drive the business forward right after their orientation session. They are bursting with energy to showcase their talent and reach their full potential as soon as they get the opportunity to do so.

“They make more money on unemployment than working.” This is a statement often said lately. As a recruiter, I disagree with this statement for two reasons: First, unemployment is only temporary and soon these individuals will be back on the job market seeking employment. Second, those who are hungry for work would rather work for a paycheck than collect unemployment. They have already posted their resumes on the recruiting sites. They are ready to be hired. Businesses right now have a huge opportunity to tap into this pool of talented, experienced, and highly skilled individuals who are looking for work.

As has been shared on Peer Talk many times, business owners feel this is an opportunity to restart their business, to operate it better than they did before this crisis started. To be better, we need the right people who can get us there. Can you think of a better way to restart your business than through building a new team, a stronger team – a team of super stars?

The Everyday Choice

The Everyday Choice

It probably sounds cliche…

however it’s been on my mind, every day in every way that I have to be intentional about my choices. How about you? Have you been thinking positively or negatively? Maybe you’re like me on some days and try not to think at all. Have you spent a normal or an abnormal time on social media and/or the news? I’m not sure how to define normal or abnormal so your own perception of normal or abnormal for you works in this question!

I ask, because I believe thinking, directly impacts your feelings, and the way you feel about something ultimately influences what you do. The thought comes first, the way you feel about the thought then drives behavior.

We must protect our thoughts…

We can choose the negative, scary, painful, path. Sometimes that path pops up with no warning at all. The challenge then becomes whether or not you go down that road or decide, what else could be true. Can I take the next fork in the road and follow a more positive or hopeful path?

What helps me-The 3rd or 4th option…

when I get stuck in being overly negative or positive is to practice thinking of at least 3 ways something could be. 2 choices is nothing more than an ultimatum. The stark choice of this or that shrinks a person’s ability to be creative or hopeful and is often paralyzing. I’m certain in that last several weeks the thought of, how am I going to make it or if this doesn’t happen or I’m going to fail, may have come to mind. Look, at these 2 choices-I’m going to fail or succeed. Really? Is that all their is? What could choice number 3 be? If you can’t think of something then go ask someone else. It’s too easy to get stuck in your own head.

When I Fail-I choose to Fall Forward…

In prepping this article I started researching the science of positive thinking. I thought it would be easier for you to buy into my rah rah newsletter today if I included real science. There’s an entire psychological study dedicated to the power of positive thinking. The very BEST business book I’ve read on the subject (and it includes the science) is written by Shirzad Chamine – Positive Intelligence. I don’t think there’s been a better time to read or listen to this book.
Finally for those of you who need something shorter than a book and potentially a video to go with it, you must take 10 minutes a listen to Denzel Washington’s presentation to a graduating class. He asks, “Do you have the guts to fail?”

Personal Message to You…

I am so inspired by every business owner in today’s climate. The sheer GUTS you have to do all that must be done right now is nothing short or real bravery. To the team members who’ve had to wade through all the uncertainty of reduced hours, unemployment, is it safe to be around other people and more-you are incredible. I know so many people who have volunteered to work, help, not work, support others in any way they can. I believe this is an extraordinary time where the unintended outcomes are that we are a better world, a better people, and a better place, whether at home, work, church, or school, where we are truly in service to others.

What to do Now . . .

What to do Now . . .

Tired of Waiting?

I know each of us is tired of waiting or worrying about what’s next. Uncertainty can cause a bit of insanity. My solution to the uncertain, is always to take some type of action. If you want to stop waiting, do something. As I thought about the things that might be worked on now in planning to re-open, PEOPLE ring first and foremost in my mind.

Ready to Create Extraordinary?

As a business owner or a team member, this is a perfect time to make sure you are where you want to be. If you spend the time to make a list of all the characteristics and traits you want in a team member, or if you are a team member, in a job, then you have a guide to help you know who to bring back or whether or not you should go back to “business as usual”. Nothing is going to be ordinary. It a great time to create a new extraordinary situation for yourself and for the businesses that serve the public.

A Little Woo-Woo for Today

A Little Woo-Woo for Today

Laura consistently fights for the health and wealth of TrainerTainment coaching clients. She’s worked with teams from Canada to the Bahamas. Her superpower of listening makes her a great partner in hearing what needs to be done next. Helping clients see that for themselves is something we all work on each and every session… If you dare, practice working on you today!

A Little Woo-Woo for Today

By: Laura O’Neal – Business Coach Leader
TI feel like I’m the woo-woo person on the TrainerTainment team. If woo-woo isn’t your thing, you might want to skip this blog. 🙂

I say the blog is woo-woo because it’s about emotion. Touchy-feely stuff. I believe we are in a time of great emotion as we navigate through layoffs, shutdowns, pandemics, and more. My goal is to share a way to better connect to those emotions and use them and this time for growth.

I think it’s possible any external disconnection we might feel because we are physically disconnected from others may be exacerbated by the disconnection we feel internally. We may feel disconnected from ourselves at this time because we have never been in a time, place, or space like we are now.

To close the gap on that disconnection, I encourage you to take a few quiet minutes and answer the questions below. No one is going to grade your work. This is an exercise just for you. Think carefully about how you feel now and how you felt in the past as you delve into the thoughts below.

What does not having freedom mean to you?

What does being told what to do mean to you?

What does not having choice mean to you?

What does waiting mean to you?

This is not only a time to address business issues, but it is also a time to address things that might have been holding us back personally and professionally. It has been my observation as a business coach, that there are ZERO DEGREES OF SEPARATION between the business owner as a person and the business itself. As humans, owners, or team members, we bring who we are to every situation.

I hope you’ll spend time thinking and especially feeling your way through the questions above. If you need to reach out to a friend, online counselor, or your pastor to walk through each question, do so. You can certainly reach out to us as well. We’re pretty good listeners and ready to help.

Stay safe friends.


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