Love of working with people

Most managers will spend a majority of their time managing people, and everything that is connected with people, even more so in the knowledge industry.

Do you find yourself talking to people all the time? Do people tend to bring their problems to you? And when they do so, do you see it as adding value to finding a solution, or do you see that as a headache which you shouldn't have to deal with?

If you find satisfaction in just being with people and helping them achieve their results, you have a primary quality to be a manager.

Going to parties and having a good time with people also displays that you love being around people and surely shows your love for food or drink, but not the essential part of helping people achieve their goals.

Although all interactions count, including phone conversations, e-mail, or Instant Messenger, it's the face time that has the most impact. If you'd rather spend your time in your own office by yourself, perhaps a manager role isn't for you.

You can, of course, force yourself to spend time with people as part of the job requirement, but unless you really enjoy that time, it will be hard to sustain and excel as a manager. You may end up limiting your interactions to a select few, where comfort levels are high, at the risk of alienating others.

Global managers today get less and less face time with some of their team members, sometimes as little as 12 hours in the entire working year. Without the love of working with people, the interaction with remote workers can really become difficult, as it'll take an extra effort to be connected at a deeper level than just work.

If you like to work with people, you are likely to be high on empathy. When people approach you with a problem, you may feel the problem to be your own. Even before the person tells you there's a problem, you already know there is a problem by the look on his/her face, the voice, and the body language. Your body language will be inviting and welcoming. While the person describes their problem to you, you listen intently and non-judgmentally, even supporting them so that he/she is encouraged to open up. If you are high on empathy, you may also have a feel of what kind of suggestion will work with this person and how it should be put across. You follow up and when you see the person getting over the problem you feel a sense of satisfaction.

Empathy also helps in understanding and working in a diverse environment, for example, working with people who grew up culturally different from you. Especially in India, there is a high degree of diversity with people from different backgrounds, and also while the working population is highly skewed towards men, women have a growing presence, especially in the knowledge industry.

Note

Please note that a manager doesn't have to be an extrovert to love working with people. Extroversion is often equated with being outgoing, and that isn't the same as having a love of working with people.

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