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1. For this Forum, you need to read Part III “Communicating with Others Proactively” in your textbook. Should be at least 300 words. 2. Discuss the key elements of positive and proactive communications that are missing in the following workplace scenarios and any other aspects of the situation you feel need to be corrected (and why). Also, complete any tasks within the scenario. (A). One-on-one supervisor with employees Your peer (a first line supervisor at a major retail store) is conducting a performance evaluation of a subordinate in the break room, where numerous other employees are eating lunch. Your peer is raising their voice and noticeably frustrated with the employee. The employee is attempting to defend their position but it is obvious your peer will not let them get a word in edge wise. You notice numerous other employees shaking their heads. You decide to approach your peer (also a friend) and address what your saw. What do you say? (B). Supervisor to a team You are a team member on a major project for a defense contractor. Your supervisor has just called an “urgent meeting” to discuss the current problems with the project’s progress. The project is months behind and slightly over budget. Most people feel it is due to the lack of resources (your project is the third priority). The meeting is in 30 minutes and you have no additional details as to the meeting content. Your supervisor routinely calls meetings with little or no warning, and then expects various employees to brief their portions of the project. When employees cannot brief their sections, the meeting is often canceled and rescheduled for after normal working hours to allow “time to better prepare (words of your supervisor).” You have had enough, you decide to email your supervisor and recommend a better way to conduct the meeting (be tactful). (C). Supervisor with a manager. You are the manager of a department at the local shipyard. You have 7 supervisors that work for you and run the day to day operations of your six divisions (your seventh supervisor runs the administrative and logistics staff). One of your supervisors continually disrupts planning meetings to discuss problems within their division. You have talked to them and counseled them several times about the proper time and place to discuss the problems. Your friend (a manager of another department) recommends that your move the supervisor to a less challenging division. What are you going to do? How? Why? Submit your answer in this Forum by clicking “Post New Thread” above. (Do not enter your answer in the Assignments section of your e-classroom.)
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Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
Communicating
with Others
Proactively

By definition, communication means two-way communication.
Insecure indivduals don’t like it. Bosses don’t like it, but leaders and
innnovators do like it.”
—Mark Shepard, Consultant
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
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Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
45
Building Interdependent Relationships
In human relationships, there are two major options:
In a dependent relationship one person has most of the power and influence. Person A
speaks and B does what he is told, In an interdependent relationship more equality
exists. Even though person A may have the authority or position power, she shares it.
In most relationships, which option is preferred?
An interdependent relationship is preferred because it builds trust, credibility, and
rapport. To achieve excellence in supervision, you need interdependent relationships
with employees. They promote the highest morale and productivity. Employees
perform better because they want to.
To counteract this, many supervisors and managers resort to autocratic, dependentrelationship approaches to supervising. They act like a bull in a china shop. While
short-term they may get where they are going, they leave a mess behind. The byproducts are employee ill will and low morale.
Use the Key Communication Skills Checklist on the next page to
help you communicate better. You will develop interdependent
relationships with employees. They will have better morale,
productivity, and attitudes.
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
Excellence in Supervision
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
Employees’ perceptions of issues or problems often differ from their supervisor’s
perceptions. Unless the supervisor applies key communication skills, the different
views can lead to conflicts. The conflicts can cause a lack of trust, rapport, and
cooperation
46
KEY COMMUNICATION SKILLS CHECKLIST
Rate yourself on a scale of 1–5 by circling the most appropriate rating for each
item. Add all circled numbers to determine your total score.
1=Rarely 2=lnfrequently 3=Sometimes 4=Often 5=Most of the Time
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
When you finish, put a plus sign (+) next to three strengths and a check (
next to two areas that need improvement.
)
As a supervisor, I…
1. Take the time to communicate with others
12345
2. Listen to others’ ideas, especially when I disagree
12345
3. Question the other person to gain more information
12345
4. Paraphrase my understanding of the issue
12345
5. Ask for input from others
12345
6. Acknowledge others’ feelings, even if they are negative
12345
7.
Treat others with respect and dignity
12345
8.
Seek solutions that can be mutually agreed to
12345
9. Follow through on my commitments
12345
10. Follow up to ensure positive communication
12345
11. Pay attention to the person through good eye contact
and helpful body language
12345
12. Overall, demonstrate that I care about the other
person’s situation or need
12345
Summary
TOTAL _________
60–55
Excellent, you are on your way to great
communication. Keep learning!
54–44
Okay. You’re doing a lot right. Stay focused and keep
learning!
44 or below
This is an opportunity to improve. Make a
commitment to keep learning!
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
47
Communicating One-on-One
with Employees
A large shipping company was having productivity problems. Employees were
concerned about a lack of communication. Management implemented a one-on-one
policy. Formally, twice a year, all supervisors were required to meet with employees to
review performance. Informally, they were to meet quarterly to discuss progress. Over
time communication, morale, and productivity improved. Why was a policy
necessary? Too many supervisors were reactive, not proactive, in their communication
process.
Purpose of One-on-One Discussions
Earlier, we discussed the power of goals. The expectation and goal-setting process
requires one-on-one meetings with employees. Here are other ways to use the one-onone process. Put a check ( ) next to the ones you have used:
Discuss performance issues
Give recognition
Listen to personal problems
Conduct a coaching session
Brainstorm new ideas
Delegate a task
Too often, supervisors won’t take the time for one-on-one meetings because they are
too busy. A supervisor who is too busy for employees is too busy to be a supervisor. Daily
informal one-on-ones can happen in a couple of minutes. Formal one-on-ones need to
be done weekly to quarterly depending on the job. You should meet with
inexperienced people more often. You should also meet more often if there is a sense
of urgency for better results. These meetings usually take 30 to 60 minutes and will be
described in more detail in Part 4: Coaching for Excellence.
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
Excellence in Supervision
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
Solve problems
48
Benefits of One-on-One Communication
What’s in it for you? Here are some of the benefits of conducting one-on-one
meetings:
Improve communication
Eliminate some problems
Prevent other problems
Demonstrate respect and concern
Increase morale
Enhance performance and productivity
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
Build rapport and trust
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
49
Delegating Tasks
Excellent supervisors delegate. Bill Marriott Sr., chairman and CEO of Marriott
International, said, “Don’t do anything someone else can do for you.” The goals of
delegating are:
Give an employee a task she can do or can learn to do so you can
accomplish other, more pressing goals
Develop your employees’ skills
Accomplish better and faster results
Common Reasons for Not Delegating
Unfortunately, many leaders fail to delegate for a variety of reasons. Put a check ( )
next to any that apply to you:
Lack of confidence in employees
Lack of time to communicate about a task or train the employee in
the task
Personal pride and reward in doing a task
Fear of letting go of a task
Don’t know how to delegate
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
Excellence in Supervision
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
Personal competence in a task and desire for it to be done right
50
How to Delegate
Meet with the employee one-on-one and follow these steps:
1.
Outline clear expectations, goals, and reasons for delegating the task.
2.
Set timelines.
3.
Answer any questions or concerns.
4.
Reassure the employee that he can do it. Give needed tools, support,
or training.
5.
Follow up to check on progress.
A new sales manager was having trouble keeping up with his past accounts and
finding new ways to grow the business. He analyzed his job priorities and decided to
delegate some of his sales accounts to his salespeople. He soon found time to develop
a needed advertising campaign.
Remember, a supervisor’s success depends on employees’ success. As a general rule,
delegate to more experienced employees. Learn to delegate tasks that matter to the
organization but are hard for you to do because of other priorities.
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
Use the chart on the next page to organize your thinking and
prepare to delegate some tasks.
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
51
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
Excellence in Supervision
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
MAKE A PLAN TO DELEGATE
52
Communicating with a Team
Together
Everyone
Achieves
More
Any time you supervise more than one person, teamwork issues arise. All the
supervisory practices we have discussed will help build better teamwork. In Part 5:
Dealing with Change Positively, other techniques are added. Another great tool for
improving teamwork is to hold regular meetings. Usually monthly meetings will do.
Consider the examples below:
Union employees complained about the lack of communication from the company.
The supervisor expressed frustration, saying, “You can’t talk to those people about
company problems—they only care about their contracts.”
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
At the urging of management, and with assistance from a consultant, the supervisor
co-facilitated some meetings with the represented employees. The employees were
updated on company news; their concerns were listened to, and they were asked for
their input. Relationships strengthened, morale increased, and the situation improved.
The supervisor changed from a dependent to an interdependent approach.
A customer-service department had poor customer survey ratings. To improve, the
supervisor created a team of six customer service reps to represent the department.
Over a period of months, the team met every week to identify the issues, gain input,
and create a plan. After implementing the plan to improve responsiveness and
courtesy, the customer-service rating improved.
A new supervisor for a financial-services company felt it was important to improve
communication in her department. Performance was mediocre, and the previous
supervisor had been fired. The new supervisor instituted weekly department
meetings to share information and work on problems. Within a few weeks,
performance and morale increased.
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
53
Use a Team Approach
Hold regular department or work-group meetings to:
Share company and department information
Discuss problems
Recognize results
Conduct training
Communicate about performance results
Create plans
Brainstorm ways to improve
Gain input
Review changes
Check on how people are doing
Guidelines for Team Meetings
Generally, regular weekly or monthly meetings last 30 to 60 minutes. In all meetings:
Take notes or ask someone else to
Start on time
End on time
Get others involved by asking for input and letting others present material
Be a good listener
The next page is a worksheet to help you prepare for meetings. Make a
copy of this worksheet and use it to prepare for your next meeting.
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
Excellence in Supervision
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
Have an agenda that you’ve prepared in advance
54
MEETING PLANNER
Department_______________
Date ________________________
Start Time ________________
End Time ___________________
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
Agenda: Key Topics
Notes:
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
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Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
55
Communicating Every Day with Others
Jim was a superb supervisor and an excellent manager. When asked what his secret
was, he replied with a smile, “Well, I didn’t go to college.” Then he laughed heartily!
He added, however, his success had to do with his ability to communicate. He started
every day by greeting or talking to employees in his area and, if time allowed, in other
departments. The discussion focused on the employee’s vacation, interests, family, or
general news. Jim said, “We only talked business if they brought it up.” Over time,
rapport developed.
Management guru Tom Peters coined the term “MBWA-Managing By Wandering
Around.” It means to be available and to roll up your sleeves to interact and work
with employees.
Evidence of Poor Communication
Some common complaints employees have about supervisors’ poor communication
skills include the following. Place a check ( ) next to the ones you have experienced
as an employee, and add another from your experience:
The supervisor is never around to talk things over or make a decision
The supervisor is always in a meeting
The supervisor is unapproachable because of a negative attitude
The supervisor claims to be too busy to listen about problems and
concerns
The supervisor never holds a department meeting
Other:
Communication requires interaction with others. It is an investment. If you give your
employees more of your time, they will give you more of their time. other words, treat
people with respect, talk to them, listen, and work with them. If you do this, others
will give you their best and go the extra mile. Daniel Goleman, author of the book
Emotional Intelligence, supports this. He found in his research that the best leaders have
the best people skills. Isn’t that what we’ve been discussing?
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
Excellence in Supervision
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
The supervisor spends too much time on the computer pounding out
memos or reports
56
Communicating with Your Manager
A CEO was asked what was the number one characteristic that he looked for in a
supervisor. He responded by saying, “Initiative!” In other words, a supervisor needs
to take action and make things happen. This also applies to communicating with your
manager. Some managers do a great job; others do a poor job. Regardless, you need to
communicate upward.
Reasons for Communicating Upward
Keep your manager informed of your progress
Build your manager’s confidence in your ability to get things done
Minimize the problems your manager has to solve
Get help when needed
Share your ideas and solutions
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
A new supervisor quickly discovered he had personnel problems. Three out of seven
employees were performing poorly. He wasn’t sure what to do. His manager was the
hands-off type and wasn’t helpful. The supervisor talked to another manager to gain
ideas on handling the performance issues. Then he created a plan for improvement for
each individual. After updating his manager on the problems and solutions, the
manager said, “Sounds good; do it!”
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
57
COMMUNICATING POSITIVELY WITH YOUR MANAGER
Check (
) the items below that you will focus on:
Stay on top of things and be aware of what is going on in your
area and around the company.
Be proactive, not reactive—seek ways to continuously
improve.
Be prepared with solutions to problems, rather than just
bringing up problems.
Write goals and plans and talk to your manager about them
even it isn’t requested.
Meet with your manager weekly or monthly to discuss your
progress.
Keep your manager informed about problems or changes—no
Follow through on commitments and timelines. Stay
organized to track these.
Go out of your way to build positive bridges with other
departments. Treat them as internal customers.
Clarify priorities; focus on what’s most important.
Take responsibility; don’t blame others. If there are obstacles
outside your control, identify ways to minimize them.
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
Excellence in Supervision
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
surprises!
58
CASE STUDY 3
Cindy, a recently promoted supervisor, wants to delegate ordering of office
supplies and equipment to Jim. Cindy is extremely busy with other priorities.
The following discussion took place:
Cindy:
“Jim, I want you to begin ordering new supplies and to create a system to
do it more effectively!”
Jim:
“I’m really busy. Besides, it’s pretty routine, isn’t it? Couldn’t someone else
do it?”
Cindy:
“Everyone’s busy. I’ve been doing it since I started, and it’s time someone
else took over. I don’t have time anymore. Here are the old procedures. Let
me know if you have questions or problems.”
Jim:
“But I do have some questions…
Cindy:
“See you later, Jim. I have a meeting.”
Copyright © 2001. Course Technology Crisp. All rights reserved.
What are your reactions to how this delegation happened?
What should Cindy do to follow up?
What should Cindy do better or differently next time?
Compare your responses to the author’s suggestions in the back of the book.
Excellence in Supervision : Essential Skills for the New Supervisor, edited by Debbie Woodbury, et al., Course Technology Crisp, 2001. ProQuest Ebook Central,
http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/apus/detail.action?docID=3116904.
Created from apus on 2019-04-15 15:25:40.
59
Strategies for Proactive Communication
Review the strategies below, …
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