A 20/20 vision for Managers in 2020

Written by Mutuk Karpakakunjaram

Published on Jan 21, 2020
How-to become a great manager

Great leaders inspire people.

Inspired people transform their organization into something larger than life. But it takes months or even years to see the impact leaders have on their people.

Great managers inspire people too. But Managers have an immediate impact on their people. Immediate because managers are in the direct flow of day-to-day work. Their actions make-or-break a product, a team, or company culture.

Whom you name manager is critical

When managers have a negative impact on their team, attrition increases, product and service quality decreases, and culture turns toxic. Trust is broken, teams suffer from poor engagement, and managers are demonized.

Jim Clifton, Chairman and CEO of Gallup, said “The single biggest decision you make in your job–bigger than all the rest–is whom you name Manager”.

I agree. Great managers love to learn as much as they love to teach; they genuinely care for everyone in their team to be successful; they are good coaches, and they are coachable. For these reasons, many consider great managers unicorns, hard to find and impossible to retain.

But it shouldn’t be this way.  Managers are neither from hell nor are they mythical unicorns. Managers are real. Real people.

So, Managers, let’s have a 2020 makeover challenge. You are a real person, a human being. My 20/20 prediction is that Managers like you will become human again.

Where to start?

In 2020,  set goals that will elevate you as a manager.  And how exactly do I do that, you’re thinking.  For starters, set this goal:

“Have consistent, meaningful 1:1 meetings with my direct reports”.

Yes, it looks simple. But it’s hard to keep up.

Achieving this goal means, no more 1-to-1 meeting cancellations because you have nothing to discuss, or you want to avoid a high-stakes conversation, or you didn’t have time to prepare. By canceling 1:1 meetings, touch bases and routine check-ins with your team, you are signaling your disinterest. And that’s when you and your team members start to drift away — from one another and from your shared goals.

Read more about why you need 1-to-1 time with every member of your team here.

We can help you win the makeover challenge

Here are some Do’s and Don’ts when it comes to having a consistent, meaningful 1:1 meetings.


  • Meet weekly or bi-weekly with every member of your team.
  • Collaborate on agendas.
  • Publish agendas ahead to avoid any surprises.
  • Discuss a variety of topics related to engagement, development, culture, and yes personal topics too.
  • Follow up on tasks to keep each other accountable.
  • Give and receive recognition and feedback early and often.


  • This is not a status update meeting. Don’t turn it into one.
  • Don’t repeat topics or create a predictable pattern.
  • Unless you have a valid reason, don’t cancel your 1:1 meetings.

At All Elements, we have curated a product designed to make great managers out of mere mortals. MeetingMaker™ will help you make every meeting with your direct reports and make sure it’s time well-spent. MeetingMaker™ makes it easy to collaborate on 1-to-1 agendas, build trust, and exchange recognition and feedback early and often.

Using our agenda library, you and your team will never run out of discussion topics. Pick topics from over a dozen categories to avoid turning your check-in into a status meeting (there’s technology for that). Share meeting notes in real-time so both you and your direct report are on the same page. Because timely recognition is viewed as the most authentic and the most accurate, MeetingMaker™ prompts both parties to give and receive recognition regularly. Get insights into your meetings with each team member to have a better understanding of your team dynamics.

These steps will make your people happy and will begin to elevate you, a mere mortal, into a great Manager.

Sign up for a free trial and start having a positive impact on the People you manage.

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