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“We’re All Startups Now”

manager training startup

We’re all startups now. The phrase struck me as soon as I heard it. I was on a call with Patti Boyle, a consultant and coach based in Austin, days after the first wave of the pandemic shut down entire swaths of the US economy. 

And Patti was absolutely right: In this new landscape of uncertainty, scarce resources, and existential threat, we are all startups.

No matter the size or legacy of our organization, we all need to do what startups do best: bootstrap, stay focused, and get ready to navigate whatever obstacles crop up next.

As a leader in your organization, you are instrumental in driving that charge. But you can’t do it alone. To fully marshal the entrepreneurial talents and energy of every person in your company, you’re going to need one of the successful organization’s secret weapons: skilled managers.

Why Do We Neglect Management Skills?

Managers—the supervisors, the bosses—don’t get a lot of love these days. We still have them in our companies, sure, but we tend to treat them as a necessary evil. In fact, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, we only spend 6–12 minutes every six months training them in the art of managing people.

This is a grave error on the part of organizations. The research on this matter is conclusive: skilled managers drive everything from employee engagement to retention to a company’s overall profits and growth rate. And they are also critical to encouraging employees to embrace the entrepreneurial, startup mindset we all need to have right now.

Wise is the organization that takes this moment to grow the highly valuable resource of management competency—just when this resource is likely one of the last things on your competitors’ minds.

First, it’s helpful to take stock of your current management resources:

  • How strong are your current managers’ skills? Do they have a common playbook to follow? Are their people energized and inspired by them—or not?
  • Do you have critical management roles to fill? Recruiting new people may not seem like a priority right now, but leaving a vacuum where you need a strong, skilled people manager is only going to slow your company’s ability to achieve breakthrough performance.

Management Is a Skill, and It Can Be Learned

The bad manager comes in many forms: they might be 

  • overbearing and micromanaging,
  • condescending and cold,
  • absent and overly permissive, or
  • a million other flavors of bad.

But whatever the case, management is a skill, and it can be learned.

In 2020, when every company is forced to operate in scrappy startup mode, the value of skilled managers cannot be overlooked.

No matter where you are, we at MGR360 are ready to train and certify managers at all levels of your company—and to stay engaged in their ongoing growth in the essential skills of managing people.

The Time Is Now

Ready to reboot your team of managers and get the competitive edge you need? Schedule a customized 1-day certification training workshop (in-person or virtual) at

Register a group of 5 managers or more before August 31, 2020, and get 60% off per attendee!

We look forward to working with you!

Picture of Alicia Thrasher

Alicia Thrasher

Alicia is cofounder and CEO of Manager360. Previously, she brought her leadership, vision, and strategic oversight to many executive positions, including leading programs for eBay/PayPal, Google, and Anheuser-Busch. She is the coauthor, with Joel Trammell, of The Manager's Playbook: Make Exceptional People Management Your Competitive Advantage.

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