Frontline Management Culture.

July 27, 2011 by · View Comments 

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In my experience, organisations often under rate the importance of Frontline Leaders.  They are often the managers who lead those who actually do the real work and importantly they are usually the closest manager to the customer touch points.

For all the clever (and there are some very clever) processes and systems we put in place, it is the positive discretionary behaviour of our customer facing employees that allows companies and organisations to really excel. What I mean by that is employees choose to do the right thing rather working to the minimum required standard.

Forget about bonus systems and benefits, the biggest influence on positive discretionary behaviour is, and always will be, their line manager. Developing the skills and behaviour of these frontline managers is where I spend a lot of my working time.

As well as getting these skills and attitudes right, their organisation also has to provide a culture that allows them to thrive.  So before embarking on front-line development it is worth considering:

  • Do they have good working relationships with their own managers?
  • Are they provided with good career opportunities and supported to progress their careers?
  • Do they experience a positive work-life balance?
  • Are they are allowed to participate and feel involved in decision making?
  • Is there is an open organisational culture which enables them to air a grievance or discuss matters of personal concern?

If you can’t honestly say yes to all these bullet points there may be some easy wins in improving business performance through some simple changes in how you treat frontline managers.

About Rob Priestley

Rob Priestley has written 13 articles on this blog.

Senior Consultant

  • Walter Murray

    You’re a true inspiration to me. Thanks!

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