5 human resource skills you need to have as a manager

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5 mins, 35 secs read time

A manager is an invaluable part of any business, and great managers are highly sought after. They can be hard to find and the best ones out there are being offered the best jobs.

Becoming a great manager requires gaining new skills from other people and jobs. And getting better at any job requires the ability to recognize when someone else has a good method and then trying to replicate it in yourself. Growing as a manager and as a person means learning from those around you.

So where can managers look to obtain these skills? The Human Resource department often requires and holds the skills that a manager in any field needs to be successful. From this team you can learn about everything from benefits technology to extra people management skills. Here are the five top skills that a manager can learn from HR.

1. Efficiency

A good HR skill every manager should develop is organization. Keeping track of finances and who is supposed to be doing what is a big part of the job. If you are unaware of what your workers should be doing, then you need prioritize honing this skill.

Part of being organized is efficiency. Making sure all of your people are working as well as they can but also as efficiently as possible. That requires making sure the technology they are using is helping them as much as they are helping the company.

A good way to make sure you are getting things done quickly and well is by employing CI/CD in your workplace. Technology that helps your team run smoothly and efficiently is always going to be an asset to a good manager. Making sure you are setting yourself and your workers up for success is the best way to keep an organized and efficient workplace.

2. Communication

The importance of communicating with the people who work for you and with you cannot be overstated. A manager who can’t communicate what they want is not going to get much done. Knowing how to be clear with your expectations sets your workers up for success.

Another key to being a good communicator is simple: talking to your employees. The people who work for you often have a better idea of issues with the company and areas that need improvement because they are seeing them all day. Being someone that your workers know they can come to with problems allows you to build and maintain a more cohesive workplace.

Talking to the people above you about what you and your workers need to succeed and get things done more efficiently not only makes you look good, it also means you’ll get the help you need faster. A manager who communicates clearly and frequently with all the people around them is a manager who can get things done.

3. A collaborative mindset

There’s a lot to be said for a person who can run a motivated, successful team. A person who is willing to step aside to let someone else shine or to admit that there is someone who would be better at completing a certain task. Running a team can be difficult and it requires someone who is ready to assess skill sets and give the right people the right jobs.

Being a manager is all about running a team. A manager needs to be someone their employees know has their best interests at heart. Being a solid team player that everyone knows is working for the good of the team as a whole will make you better at your job.

As you move up in managerial duties, it is likely you will be part of more team projects. If you’ve already shown that you know how to lead a team, you are more likely to be put in charge of your group to make sure the task is done well. Being known as an excellent team player and leader is one of the best reputations you can have in a business.

4. Ability to foster a positive work environment

Whenever a lot of different people spend an extended period of time together, there is going to be a conflict. Knowing how to approach and resolve conflict will help you keep your team running smoothly. The ability to be empathetic and to understand where the conflict came from will help you resolve issues fairly and efficiently.

Making the office a welcoming and friendly place is also a great way to retain employees. The turnover in businesses where employees do not feel valued is alarming. Making sure your team knows they are important and valued is the best way to keep loyal employees.

Having a workplace that feels as friendly as possible keeps a lot of the stress that comes with having to go to work at bay. A toxic environment has a toxic effect on everyone’s well-being. As a manager, it is your job to make sure you are keeping the office as peaceful and team-oriented as possible.

5. Smart (and confident) decision making

Being a wishy-washy manager is not going to help anyone. You need to be able to make tough calls without unloading that stress on others. Being the boss means making decisions, even if they are very hard to make.

A great manager needs to figure out the root of an issue and then make a call on how to fix it. They need to make simple decisions like where to put things and complicated ones like whether someone needs to be let go. Anyone who cannot make those kinds of decisions will not be an effective manager.

Managers can’t avoid making decisions. Difficult decisions require people who are willing to think through a problem and talk to the people who know the situation. Being informed is important, and making decisions requires being informed.


Being an effective manager requires many skills. Many can be learned from the people working in human resources. Being aware of where to find role models is just a small part of the skill set great managers need.

A manager needs to be able to talk to the people around them, run a team that communicates well and give jobs to the right person. Being an effective team leader also means being able to communicate what you need and understand what your team needs.

Managers are one of the most important parts of any company. They are in charge of keeping their teams running as efficiently as possible. But being a good manager starts with being able to develop personal skills and increase your talents as a leader. So look to your HR department and get started.

Micah Gebreyes

Micah Gebreyes

is a Senior Manager of Content Marketing at Greenhouse where she develops and leads the content strategy for Greenhouse blogs, social media and thought leadership newsletter, Modern Recruiter. When she's not working to bring the brand story to life, she enjoys spending time with her Pomeranian, Cashew. Keep the conversation growing with Micah on LinkedIn or through the Greenhouse LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.