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10 Good Traits and Characteristics of a Successful Manager


You have a business and you are interested in hiring a manager who will be able to assist you in growing that business from the ground up. When you put out an ad for this position, you receive hundreds of resumes. Even if you narrow this bunch down to just the people who seem most qualified for the job, you're going to have to do quite a few interviews to make sure that you select the manager who is going to be most capable of growing your business. How do you know who that person is?

Here are ten of the most important traits to look for in a manager for your business:

  1. Self-Motivation. The person that you hire for the job has to be capable of doing the job without needing you to look over her shoulder all of the time. This individual needs to be capable of understanding the basic goals of the business and developing her own strategies for achieving those goals. She needs to be committed to putting her all into the job every day without the close supervision of a boss.
  2. Great Customer Service Skills. No matter what type of business you are in, you can benefit from having a manager who is excellent in dealing with customers and clients. Ultimately this may not be a large percentage of the manager's job since the daily tasks of customer service will fall to other employees. However, when problems arise with customers, the manager is the one who has the potential to diffuse the situation or to exacerbate it. You want to hire a manager who is going to be capable of making even the most difficult customers happy so that you can retain customers and the business can grow.
  3. Integrity and Trustworthiness. You want to hire a manager who is going to be someone that you think that you can trust. Of course, it's hard to tell this off the bat at an interview but asking the right questions can give you a general sense of the individual's basic integrity. By hiring someone that you believe is trustworthy, you will reduce the stress of placing the growth of your business in the hands of someone else.
  4. Being a Team Player. The manager has to be someone who is committed to working with a team of people for the improvement of the whole business. This means that the manager isn't in the business solely for the selfish reasons of "getting ahead". Instead, he is interested in growing the business because it is going to be to his benefit as well as to the benefit of the other people working with him in the company. A manager is a middle-man who has to work with both the upper-level bosses and the lower-level employees so it's highly important that this person is really a team player.
  5. Conflict-Resolution Abilities. Serving as this type of middle-man is also going to put the manager into the position of having to act as a liaison between people in the company. He will be the liaison between the lower-level and upper-level employees. He will also serve as the mediator for disputes between lower-level employees. In order to be able to do this position well, the manager that you hire is going to have to be capable of handling conflicts in the office place. He needs to be someone who can spot problems as they form and nip them in bud as well as someone who can deal with bigger conflicts when they do arise.
  6. Knowledge of the industry. The manager is going to have to be someone who is capable of answering the questions of customers, clients and staff members. This means that she better know what she is talking about. Although you can certainly provide training in the industry to a good manager, the ideal person for the job is going to be someone who already has advanced or specialized experience in this industry. A thirst for more knowledge about the business is a plus.
  7. Dependability. When it comes right down to it, you're going to need to have a manager that you can count on. A dependable manager is someone who always shows up to work on time, doesn't slack off on the job and is capable of being counted on to stay late when there are times at the office that require him to do so. You want to be able to ask this person to do something for you and know for sure that he is going to just go ahead and do it.
  8. Ability to Remain Calm. The role of being a manager can be a tough position to be in. There is a lot of stress involved in the daily tasks of management. A number of problems will arise throughout the course of any given day and the manager is responsible for handling those things well. You want to hire a manager who is going to be able to remain calm more often than not. A calm manager will keep the entire office calm which will lead to increased productivity and a better workplace overall. This will ultimately grow your business.
  9. Optimistic Attitude. You don't want a manager who is calm but indifferent. You want a manager who is going to approach each project and each work day with an optimistic attitude. You want a manager who will come in smiling and who will express genuinely good feelings about the work that she is doing with her team. This will help to keep morale in the business high which leads to satisfied employees, low turnover rates, higher rates of productivity and growth of the business.
  10. Leadership Skills. Beyond all of the other things that you need to see in a manager, you need to immediately be able to see that he has strong leadership skills. He needs to be confident in his ability to lead a team. He needs to be a good public speaker, someone who can delegate tasks appropriately and a person that people will feel comfortable taking directions from. If you see these things in someone at an interview, it's a safe bet to guess that this person will probably make a good manager for your business.


Mel Carriere from Snowbound and down in Northern Colorado on July 10, 2013:

Calmness and optimism are the two things I have seen that are sorely lacking in managers today. Too many times they are running around in a panic, and this doesn't exactly inspire confidence in the troops. I think you wrapped up sound management in a nutshell. Good job.

kholoud on April 14, 2013:


Raghu nandana on November 21, 2012:

Use full information's. Most of us have these skills as Managers.

Joshua Nyamache from Kenya on August 16, 2012:

Hiring the right manager is a must in order to attain success and growth of the organization. Thanks for sharing these tips.

martinnitsim on July 23, 2012:

well gaza i got it from a mate so here is the link

and some info ,give them a call ,just say martin n recommened you

Michael VO from Warrenton Missouri on June 22, 2012:

Some of your elements speak to the servant as leader model. In thirty plus years of working for major aerospace firms I have rarely seen a true leader. Plenty of managers (of the micro variety) but few leaders.

michaelheemson on June 14, 2012:

hello gerry i got it from a mate so here is there contact

and details, they have 20% discount now,just say micky heemson told you to ring

Scroll to Continue

Thnk 4 u slf on May 28, 2012:

What a great hub 4 a gr8 manager out der n it hlpd m a lot wit my assignment...*thnx

Skyler Meyer from 297 Garlington Rd Unit A Greenville, SC 29615 on March 12, 2012:

Your hub is spot on! I am in the process of building a team for our company and I will be using these factors as a part of it. I have always admired great amateur and professional coaches for their focus and determination. Thanks for sharing..

grandhe rajani on March 01, 2012:

good things are always good. the article is relay help full for a good manager thanks for the great hub

Dr.henry on February 20, 2012:

Wow this is very nice i have change my manager he doesn't what to do again, my business is colapin since two nw.

Cherie Ortiz-Rios on February 02, 2012:

This article is not only accurate but effective.

Jeff_McRitchie on January 19, 2012:

Excellent article. I really enjoyed reading it!

Ravi Singh from India on January 03, 2012:

Good thoughts.. thanks.

ken Okwara on December 02, 2011:

I have never come up with a checklist on characteristics of an ideal manager for my businesses but now no need to hire an expert with this kind of information in the hub.


Tahira Okara on November 14, 2011:

Great thoughts. As an aspiring "good manager," I can appreciate these qualities in the people I've worked for.

MBerg22 from Colorado Springs, CO on November 10, 2011:

Great thoughts. As an aspiring "good manager," I can appreciate these qualities in the people I've worked for.

Marisa Hammond Olivares from Texas on September 22, 2011:

maintaining a mutual perspective is vital

Sarah Kolb-Williams from Twin Cities on September 15, 2011:

Great breakdown -- a good refresher course for anyone who's been in management so long they've forgotten what it's like to be on the other side!

BORU on August 27, 2011:


Alexander Thandi Ubani from Lagos on August 04, 2011:

Thanks for all those wonderful tips. I now know what to do in the event of hiring a manager

Michael Adams from USA on July 15, 2011:

This is a great hub. I have a few ex-bosses who could learn a few things from this hub, lol ;)

Paul Raisbeck on July 12, 2011:

Good, comprehensive Hub, thanks.

Having worked with a lot of business managers I think the key success element is the ability to be able to communicate with people and get them on side. And to do that managers have to trust people and have the confidence to let them take responsibility for their actions. So many managers stifle their team in an effort to demonstrate that they're 'in charge'.

thelandlord on June 22, 2011:

Nicely written. Another important ingredient is empathy. Most managers have no idea about how people they work feel about the job, about their managers. either they ignore it or never understand it.

jasneth on June 19, 2011:

this helps me a lot for doing my research.. thanks..

leeroper from UK on May 11, 2011:

This list made me laugh, not many managers hold all these qualities, many have some of them but not many have all. The successful ones certainly do or have a strong team around them that balance out their gaps of skills.

Khongsai on May 03, 2011:

Nice one.

mickeyy on April 13, 2011:

Thanks for kicking off these rocking tips!

Middlespecialist on March 24, 2011:

This is an excellent list. These are also great qualities for any good employee to have!

rallyre from San Diego, California on March 06, 2011:

I would venture that those are the tips for a great leader as well! Great article.

nancypolaska from Oxford Road on February 24, 2011:

A good manager should not panic in difficult situations. He knows how to deal with pressure.

daisygreen from China on February 23, 2011:

To be frank, I am agree with your opinions and appreciate your writing skills.

i4u on November 30, 2010:

What a superb hub. I loved the exact qualitys required for a manager and followed with complete faith.

Looking forward for more similar awesome hubs from you.


Mrs. Fisherwoman on November 11, 2010:

you just gave me all the answers for my homework! thanks!

Mr. Fisherman on November 10, 2010:

Great Hub! A big help for me. thanks

Zekarias on November 10, 2010:

i am in love with ur hub

lightofearth from Dhaka on October 27, 2010:

informative hub

DallasGTFO on September 08, 2010:

Great place for business meeting.

Retail site visitors who view video stay two minutes longer on average and are 64% more likely to purchase than other site visitors. (Comscore, August 2010)

i.hadzi on September 07, 2010:

After I've found your article, I thought to my self "One who seeks thee shall find"


I like - I follow

Cherie Concannon from Leicester on August 26, 2010:

This is an interesting article, i own a company that provides training in management and leadership so it is always good to find other peoples opinions and knowledge on the relevant subject.

MyScratchOff from Charlotte, NC on August 07, 2010:

Self motivation is the best thing you can have when you are in the job market. How motivated are you to actually get something done. If you do not have the motivation then forget it. I do not think you are going to last!

sispencer from England on July 29, 2010:

All very good points, that create a successful manager, I like being a team player, people should always understand the "team" aspect

brighthope on July 23, 2010:

Great points!

very informative and helpful hub!

dgicre from USA on June 20, 2010:

Very helpful and well written. You have good insight on this.

Friso on June 12, 2010:

Very nice, i think most of these management skills are good to use. However, some skills might be useful in specific management roles more than other skills. Conflict resolution is good in the decisional role.

Rebecca Morehead on June 10, 2010:

Great article packed with info. It is so true what you say that managers are the "middle man" using balancing tactics between departments and upper levels. A team approach has to be the only answer. It takes a special person to take on the role of manager.

Thanks for the motivation.



susan on June 02, 2010:

I really appreaciate the good work. This is much encouraging and motivating.

Petra on June 02, 2010:

Very informative hub. Good project manager is mixture of all the traits you mentioned, so I can't say which one is the most important. I would only add that good project manager is the one who can also integrate with the stakeholders and make balance between the needs of customers, stakeholders and the project itself.


Tony from At the Gemba on May 27, 2010:

A good manager also has to show respect for his/her subordinates..

A good and informative hub.

Paula buff on April 22, 2010:

I also think they need good follow through!

DXmusic on April 19, 2010:

Very enlightening article...A manager should be sincere to his work, build morale, delegate his authority, snd should have other skills to deal with his subordinates so that they can work effeciently.

Harbeamborlah on April 17, 2010:

Informative article kudos to you. Now i know what to do to become a successful manager

manageresponsible on April 04, 2010:

Great article...very informative. Managers should really see this one, so they can ask themselves if they are really capable and worthy of their positions. Some are just not really manager material but still got the position...I just wonder why.

mcjohan25 on March 29, 2010:

Good hub...very informative! managers should read this one...

Roger on March 12, 2010:

I think the one area I struggle in is conflict-resolution. I'm not comfortable with conflict. Realizing that fact has helped me to overcome some of my apprehension regarding this area of management.

hoseni kayode on February 23, 2010:

with more thoughts and understanding i have come to get some additional basics about being a good manager or bad,it is all to a common goal, get the job done, be nice dont be, etc , well Having these traits will make anyone a better manager

Laura du Toit from South Africa on December 09, 2009:

Very good hub and deserving of a perfect 100 score.

With the exception of experience in the industry which can be acquired none of the others are learned skills - so employing someone lacking these traits and hoping that they will be able to acquire these is a grave mistake.

Thanks for a great hub!

Steve Meyer on October 23, 2009:


Very good hub on what it takes to be a successful manager.


Mark Meredith on September 19, 2009:

Having these traits will make anyone a better manager. I've seen many managers fail in their career because they couldn't learn how to be successful. It's a shame because many of them had great talent, but they just lacked one or two traits to push them to the top.

Bostonian Banter on September 01, 2009:

Most interesting. Great thoughts. Thank you!

jonty on September 01, 2009:

Very well written hub .....

very much informative ......

Thank you very much for your great hub, for good advice, good wishes and support. Thanks for sharing your experience with all of us.

Harry Paul on August 26, 2009:

A good manager makes sure that their employees have the resources on hand to get their jobs done. There are times when the company does not provide those resources so the manager you want is one who tries to think outside that box and still manage to help the group get the job done.

Gin Delloway on July 08, 2009:

nice hub! I like it!!

Reynolds_Writing from Atlanta, Georgia on May 27, 2009:

This is a great list.. and I agree with your Top 10. I wish more managers had these traits... perhaps the economy would be better.

spapaul3497 from xxxxxxx on April 28, 2009:

Thanks for the advice - found it very useful broken down into 10 separate traits.

mayhmong from North Carolina on April 15, 2009:

I can do all of the above except remaining calm part!

ontheway on April 02, 2009:

10 Traits of a Successful Manager

very good, I support you, come on , welcome to my hub!

Kreg Enderson from Phoenix on April 01, 2009:

All great qualities of a leader and so true. One that is also greatly impacts the team is "enthusiasm". There's a great book titled "Primal Leadership" that shares research on the positive effects of a leader that displays a high level of enthusiasm. This may fall into your "optimistic attitude" category.

premsingh on August 25, 2008:

yes, a manger can not manage things effeciently if lacks few things listed in the hub. good work.

guidebaba from India on August 10, 2008:

Hi ! Thank you for Answering my Request. Seems like you have a series of Hubs on Managers. I need to go through all of them to improve myself as a Branch and Business Development Manager.

tulwave from Orlando,Fl on August 09, 2008:

Really good information and it has me thinking I should hire myself as the manager and look for a new boss! Thanks for the great hub

fishskinfreak2008 from Fremont CA on August 09, 2008:

Very useful information and very true. Too many managers here in Hong Kong are aggressive and expect people to work to the bone with no pay.

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