Published on : 20th October 2023
How to Increase Line Manager Engagement
Whether you're a seasoned member of your organisation or a newcomer, the challenge of developing line manager engagement with other departments is always present. Line managers may come and go, and the levels of their engagement fluctuate, making it a tricky task to keep them where they should be.
Understanding The Challenges
For you to have success with any multi-departmental initiative, a primary challenge is enhancing engagement, especially with those elusive managers who seem difficult to connect with. Some managers prefer doing things their own way, while others struggle to communicate effectively or follow up on actions and responsibilities.
Such situations can lead to misunderstandings, operational inefficiencies and delays.
Building Strong Connections
To tackle this, you should consider several key steps. First and foremost, you must reach out to line managers for the first time or to re-establish a connection. This can be achieved through face-to-face meetings or, if necessary, via platforms like Teams or Zoom.
In these discussions, whatever your role or level, you need to understand the manager's goals, whilst being very clear about your own objectives and responsibilities.
Identifying and working towards common ground allows both parties to move forward effectively. It may involve setting up regular meetings, establishing clear processes, and agreeing on specific timelines for actions. This could include providing timely project feedback or joining them on team meetings to help align with the business.
Fostering Understanding and Communication
Moreover, it's crucial for you to build a strong relationship with the line manager in question by understanding their personal working and management style and any cultural considerations.
This shared understanding fosters empathy and creates a platform for open communication. Effective communication, in turn, forms the cornerstone of a successful partnership.
Once the objectives are clear and the lines of communication are open, both parties can take practical actions to ensure ongoing collaboration. Regular contact is essential to monitor the manager's commitment to the agreed-upon processes and goals, including good communication, timely feedback, and engagement.
If improvements remain elusive, you should be prepared to involve senior stakeholders in the business to facilitate any necessary changes. This may even require reaching out to the line manager's superiors.
By implementing these points, you can enhance your working practices, build stronger partnerships with your line managers and together be more productive.