8 Habits Of Highly Effective Google Managers

Google’s “people operations” team (HR) has applied the Google Way (data analytics) to management analysis and developed a manifesto entitled Eight Habits Of Highly Effective Google Managers.


Google has used this manifesto to turn crappy managers into acceptable ones.


By teaching them the basics.

Specifically, the manifesto has helped engineering geniuses who know how to write code but have no idea how to manage people learn how to manage people.

Not surprisingly, it turns out that the eight habits of highly effective Google managers are the same as the eight habits of highly effective managers everywhere!

Courtesy of the New York Times, which edited the Google manifesto and wrote more about it here, here are the eight habits of highly effective Google managers and three pitfalls.  The “good habits” are listed in order of priority, from most-important to least-important.


1. Be a good coach

     * Provide specific, constructive feedback, balancing negative and positive
     * Have regular one-on-ones, presenting solutions to problems tailored to the employee’s strengths

2. Empower your team and don’t micro-manage

    * Balance giving freedom to your employees while still being available for advice
    * Make “stretch” assignments to help them tackle big problems

3.  Express interest in employees’ success and well-being

    * Get to know your employees as people, with lives outside of work
    * Make new folks feel welcome, help ease the transition

4.  Be productive and results-oriented

    * Focus on what you want the team to achieve and how employees can help achieve it
    * Help the team prioritize work, and make decisions to remove roadblocks

5.  Be a good communicator and listen to your team

    * Communication is two-way: Both listen and share
    * Hold all-hands meetings and be specific about the team’s goals
    * Encourage open dialogue and listen to the questions and concerns of your employees

6.  Help your employees with career development

7.  Have a clear vision and strategy for the team

     * Even amid turmoil, keep the team focused on goals and strategy
     * Involve the team in setting and evolving the team’s vision, goals, and progress

8.  Have key technical skills, so you can help advise the team

    * Roll up sleeves and work side-by-side with team, when needed
    * Understand the specific challenges of the work

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