Being a manager can really suck. You are managing a team of people who, although seem to like you, still know that you are their boss and a friendship can never truly evolve. Meanwhile, while telling this team what to do, you are under a huge amount of pressure from your own boss AND the customers you serve who believe you are responsible for the whole company. It can be a pretty lonely profession with no one really to turn to during hard moments.
I struggled terribly in my previous branch and dreaded returning to work after my maternity leave. I was given the opportunity to work in a branch closer to home and jumped at the chance. It’s a smaller branch with just six member of staff but it has cut over an hour a day from my commute which has helped my work/life balance massively.
What’s all this got to do with flowers I hear you ask. Well, a couple of weeks ago, a woman in my team bought me the most gorgeous bouquet from Marks and Spencer’s. I had tweaked her working pattern ever so slightly. To me, it wasn’t a huge change and barely impacted the office, but to her it meant the world. It made me really think as a manager about how such a small thing can make such a huge difference to a member of staff.
I get lots of compliments from my team about how well I am doing as their manager which just feels fantastic of course, but the truest indicator to me is how we are performing as a team. Last week after weeks of hard work we finally made it to the number one spot in our area. To be able to have a great relationship with my staff whilst not compromising on performance has to be my greatest success in any branch in my career so far.
Perhaps I should print this piece out ready for my performance review in a couple of weeks!