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  • Writer's pictureChloe @ OneSource HR

The Line Manager Code of Conduct

We bet you've already got an extensive list of tasks that seems never ending as a front line people manager. From timekeeping and attendance management, to performance reviews and recruitment activities, we recognise you've got a lot to contend with on a daily basis, and that's on top of the technical responsibilities of your role!

It's not surprising that line managers often feel overwhelmed with the expectations of them from senior leaders and their direct reports. Don't worry, this article isnt about to add more to your task list, in fact, we're suggesting that to be a great line manager and satisify the great expectations of you, that you focus less on a set task list, and more on these 5 simple key principles of line manager conduct. These 5 principles of line manager code of conduct are centred on the positive outputs and performance of you and your team for business success.

Embrace that we are all different - get to know your team members and embrace their differences. Understanding the strengths, weaknesses & motivations of your team will help you maximise team performance & support individual success and happiness at work. It’s not enough to say that you belong to a diverse and inclusive company just because you may have people from different ethnicities, backgrounds, and lifestyles working with us. The line management team need to provide clear and unambiguous support for all people despite their differences, and moreover tailor the employee experience to individual lifestyles.

Be an ethical role model - You should live and breathe your company values, displaying the right behaviours in your actions and interactions. How you behave at work sets an acceptable standard for how others perceive it is ok to behave. Use a stop-think-act methodology before doing something impulsive, acting under stress or saying something you might regret in the heat of the moment. The standards that you hold yourself too are likely to be the behaviours that you will start to see from your team too.

Do the right thing - line managers should lead by example, and this includes complying with internal policies and procedures, in addition to governing laws and regulations. At OneSource HR we believe in giving employees the freedom to screw up, and nobody has ever been sacked because they made a genuine mistake, where that mistake has been appropriately risk considered. However, we balance this view with a zero tolerance policy in the following areas: unsafe, illegal or unethical working practices; violence, aggression, discrimination, bullying and harassment; bribery and corruption, fraud and deception; and finally, retaliation against anyone who speaks up and does the right thing.

Communicate consistently - we really believe that a culture of open communication compounds business performance, and helps to attract and retain the most talented people. Give honest feedback on a regular and ongoing basis, not just to your direct reports, but engage in peer to peer recognition and upwards feedback to drive organisational performance. Share information with your team in a thoughtful way, ensuring confidentiality in sensitive situations, but disseminating important messages. Listen as well as talking, and be perceptive, listening to what your team members aren’t saying, but what you derive from their actions.

Provide mentorship - there are opportunities to learn and develop in everyday situations, and your team members will turn to you to provide the leadership, mentorship and confidence required for them to engage in development opportunities. Unfortunately you can’t bottle up motivation and gift it to others, but by providing a safe space to explore new ideas, grow and develop, and work towards clearly defined and aligned goals, your colleagues will motivate themselves. Ask on a regular basis, “what’s going well, and what’s not going so well” so that you can support employees with facing challenges and problem solving. Identify skills gaps through this regular communication and act on them with support from your HR team to get the right training for colleagues to succeed.

These are the 5 foundations of our Line Manager Toolkit, an interactive e-booklet supported by 12 face to face, or virtual delivery training sessions. Our toolkit launched in October 2020 and has already been tailored to 3 clients, with training sessions scheduled for delivery in 2021. Our clients had specific goals, such as, increasing performance, profit, manager accountability, manager capability and manager confidence. We don't believe that one size fits all, so get in touch with us today and let's discuss how we can tailor the Line Manager Toolkit to support the line managers in your business.

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