Daniele Matteucci uses his extensive corporate management experience to deliver a comprehensive primer for first-time managers. Seasoned professionals seeking a refresher course will also appreciate this excellent guide.
The book’s first half covers the rational side of managing people. Matteucci breaks down a manager’s basic duties and offers an easy-to-follow, step-by-step guide that includes establishing goals, developing and executing action plans, and building the best teams for the jobs required.
He also offers sage advice, such as reducing problems to small parts: “Having many people in front of a big problem could result in more confusion. They may be overwhelmed and believe the problem has no solution. Splitting the problem into small parts will help reduce the complexity and facilitate finding a solution.”
Matteucci even covers something as simple but critical as how to properly construct a to-do list in two columns. The left side states the task, the right side the next immediate action required to accomplish that task. This emphasizes action rather than just thinking about the task.
The book’s second half explores the human side of managing, discussing how to handle pressure, the importance of people skills, how to assess employees’ personal traits and more. Matteucci notes, for example, that even when they are high-achieving, selfish employees undermine an organization. “They can help you achieve short-term results, but the costs will be high.”
The text is loaded with practical advice, along with numerous charts, graphs and matrices. Each chapter ends with an “It’s Time for Action” section, with relevant questions. For example, the chapter on negotiating asks: “Are there rewards for your business partners to keep their commitments? Are there punishments if they fail their commitments?”
Among the book’s most pertinent lessons, Matteucci makes it clear that managers are under constant pressure to perform—squeezed, like oranges, every day. “Growing companies will always ask you to deliver more with less,” he writes in this valuable primer. “That is the essence of profit.”
Also available as an ebook.