As a manager, your main value to your company is your influence. Good managers influence their company far more than average employees by trickling ideas both down and up the ladder. Mary Kay Ash once said, “People are definitely a company’s greatest asset. It doesn’t make and difference whether the product is cars or cosmetics. A company is only as good as the people it keeps.”

If people are the greatest asset of a company, then a good manager is invaluable. Here are four ways to help you be the best manager you can be:

1. Pay attention to improving your company’s competitive advantage. Remind employees that the first law of business is “take care of the customer”. Encourage your employees to innovate and create to prevent your competitors from having better ideas than you. In the hospitality industry, it’s easy to get caught up in the mundane repetitiveness of day-to-day activities. Spice it up by incorporating a “new ideas” segment into weekly staff meetings. Quality of product, quality of service, and overall quality of experience must be exemplary in the hospitality industry in order to prevent loss of your customer base to a competitor. Ensure rewards for employee efficiency.

2. Diversify! To make sure your company has a solid ladle of the melting pot, hire people of every age range, race, ethnicity, and gender. By 2060, half of the American population will be made up of ethnic and racial minority groups. Also, familiarize yourself with global cultures, especially if your company plans to expand internationally. It is important to diversify your employee pool in order to not only keep up with your customer base, but also to ensure the organizational strength of your company by maximizing the diverse contributions that you will only get by having a diverse employee pool.

3. Technology is your friend , use it! Spending on retail software will exceed $20 billion by 2014. Technology has transformed industries and changed the very nature of business. Minimally, e-business practices will reduce your cost of communication. If used effectively, e-business technologies can have a far greater positive impact on your profit margin through accelerated decision making, broadened communication, expedited handling of employee and store issues, more thorough hiring practices, and the many benefits project and employee management software can offer. If you incorporate the right management software in your business, scheduling, tracking, communication, and hiring employees can be faster, easier, and considerably more efficient financially.

4. Don’t forget yourself. While managing in the fast paced hospitality industry, it can be easy to compartmentalize your life – home life and work life need not intertwine. This can be beneficial to your sanity, but it can make you feel like two different people. When making decisions at work, be sure to remind yourself who you are and what your ethics dictate. In today’s high pressure climate in one of the most competitive industries, the need to meet quotas and deadlines can leave you facing some major ethical dilemmas. Consider the implications of your decisions, and whether the decision fits into your life plan. Be sure that your company’s culture fits your compass of ethics, as it can be difficult to juggle bosses, subordinates, your daily workload, and two conflicting sets of rules.

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