A line manager is a person or the manager who is responsible for heading a revenue-generating department. He has a vital role in an organization, and that is of executing key functions, for instance, decision-making, target setting, and policymaking.
The line manager reports to a higher-ranking manager, and his role is to oversee the operations of the business and manage employees by supervising them daily. He can be referred to as the liaison between the upper management and the employees working in the organization.
Related job titles of a line manager are
- Team leader
- Section leader
Responsibilities of the line manager
A line manager is responsible for managing resources and the employees to achieve the daily and functional goals of the organization. Some of the important responsibilities include
- Hiring and recruiting talented people for specific job positions
- Providing coaching to the employees who need it
- The line manager is entrusted with motivating his team members to keep their efficiency and productivity levels high
- Offering support to the recruits by providing opportunities for training so that they become familiar with the company
- The line manager deploys the resources under him to achieve set goals and plans
- He is the one who complies with legislation and policies in the firm
- Ensuring job rotation by cross-training employees and reducing assignment gaps
- Making sure that there is an effective and open communication channel in place
- Delegating workloads
- Offering performance feedback to the team members
- Ensuring quality standards are maintained for all processes
- Evaluating overall performances of the individual employee as well as the team
- Delivering reviews about the performance levels of the individuals as well as the overall team
- Ensuring that organizational and functional goals are achieved effectively
- Identifying whether there is a need for corrective measures or not and implementing those measures for the achievement of company goals and objectives.
- Keeping a vigilant eye on the team and individual metrics and performances against set targets
- Coordinating with other line managers across the organization
- Offering performance indicators and productivity reports to the management
- The responsibility of the line manager includes scheduling meetings at regular intervals to discuss strategies and progress
Skills needed for the role of line manager
Line management is a position that you cannot take for granted. No doubt it is a tough job, and the manager has to be on his toes 24*7 to keep up with it.
Although it is a journey where the manager has to be open-minded and flexible to face all the challenges, still some skills are necessary as they will prove a blessing in effectively overseeing the responsibilities. Some of the job-related skills he will need are described below
The line manager must have the self-confidence to understand and manage his employees. He must be an expert in self-management so that he can do whatever is required for his job-profile without being influenced by others. It is the line manager who has to maintain a viable balance between the upper management and the employees working under him, has to show the same balance, understanding, and determination while dealing with both the level of employees in the organization.
A good line manager cultivates potential, know-how, and skill through self-study and also by undertaking training programs that will help him to enhance his skills. He becomes an expert at understanding human emotions, and this ability helps him to manage his seniors and supervise his juniors in the firm.
He can easily take a step back and deliver a consistent performance that will be appreciated by one and all.
The main problem in any organization is the lack of proper communication channels. Sometimes the communication styles play an important role in maintaining distance between upper management and lower management. This creates a long line of misunderstandings that is harmful to every organization.
It is the line manager who has the responsibility of creating a viable communication channel where the flow of communication is smooth, clear, distinct and of course, open. Listening is an important part of communication, and this is what the line manager must be adept at. He must practice active listening techniques because when one listens, he opens his mind to both the verbal and non-verbal words and signs that others are trying to impart.
This helps him to understand the situation in a better way and seek clarity if he sees any disparity. The line manager must also have useful vocabulary and speaking skills because he has to command and direct his employees daily.
The most important skill that a line manager must possess is his ability to communicate, ask questions, seek answers and getting the full picture before making a decision.
3. Decision-making skills
The line manager occupies a unique position in an organization. He has to take orders from a senior manager and then direct his team as per the instructions. The decision-making powers related to that specific order are with him, and it is he who makes sure that the instructions are carried out most effectively. The upper management is not bothered about how the results are achieved as it is only interested in the end-game.
The workforce is diverse with different behavior. Approach and abilities and it is the line manager who is in the position to distribute work as per the skills of his employees. He knows the best and hence can make decisions about which job opportunity will suit which of his employees.
They empower every member of the team and encourage them to focus on goals to achieve the target in the best possible manner and the least possible time.
Importance of line managers
The importance of the line manager is as follows
- Line managers offer encouragement and support to the team members. They deliver constructive feedback and make sure about employee engagement. This ultimately results in employee satisfaction and organizational productivity
- The job of a line manager is essential as he is the bridge between the upper management and the lower-level employees
- Implementing strategies in a useful and timely manner is an integral part of the line manager’s job
- The input of the line manager is essential for a firm.