Multi-Unit Managers: The greatest actors of all time and how we are potentially letting them down.
Posted on 12th October 2020 at 11:34
Becoming a homegrown Multi-Unit Manager is arguably the most challenging step an individual will ever take moving from the rung of General Manager to that of area, regional, cluster or operations manager, just a few of the myriad of names that are common to the management of multiple units.
As a General Manager the impact of all actions is felt by somewhere from 5 to 50 people typically. As a Multi-Unit Manager the impact can quadruple at least, literally overnight. With the step away from the GM rung on the ladder to that of MUM the number of individuals that can be impacted by actions taken rises exponentially!
Whilst the role undoubtedly becomes a bigger one, interacting with more people socially, dealing with more complex issues, identifying bigger revenue opportunities it also can become a much lonelier one. The individual will have been used to being surrounded by team, customers and the noise and buzz of constant activity that goes with it. Yet alongside the transition into the bigger MUM role arrives the moments of solitude and isolation spent travelling between units.
With the career advancement comes a greater sense of pressure on the individual. After all we praise ourselves for developing internally, for hitting our internal succession targets and for helping an individual rise to the next challenge and we promote them internally to the role of MUM yet we anticipate that performance will only be positively impacted. We may provide the amateur MUM time to settle into the role but in today's hard and competitive trading environments there is a pressure on that individual to deliver almost immediately.
William Shakespeare is famous for announcing all life to be a stage and never has there been a more valuable statement in service organisations where all performance, regardless of role or level, is designed to leave a positive impression on the customer. Just like attending a musical on Broadway or in the West End, the consumer pays a price to be made to feel something at an emotional level. Be that uplifting or raw, exciting or fear invoking - it is designed to leave an impact!
If you have grown up in the hospitality industry you will, no doubt, remember the teachings from the Disney Institute. Most notably the "smile you are entering the stage" typically pasted to the back of the Front of House door to remind you as soon as that door opens you enter onto the stage with the clear goal of delighting the customer, through the delivery of the service or more latterly the experience.
Professor Dan McAdams from Northwestern University posits that everyone is an actor with their life being the drama containing acts and chapters that change and evolve over time. As an individual transitions from the role of a General Manager, through internal succession planning and talent development, impacting an audience of circa 50 to a Multi-Unit Manager impacting an audience of 500 what acting training are we providing them with to truly deliver exceptional performance from the get go? Of course, they will have been given new tools, new structures, handbooks, systems, buddies etc. etc. etc., but what training will they have received to help them transition from impacting an audience of 50 to an audience of 500!
How often, in developing GM's to MUM's, do we place the right focus and resource on their behaviours, their communication styles and preferences, their understanding of who they are and how they show up - after all impacting 50 is one thing but impacting 500 is quite another. How often do we provide the support to help them self regulate their emotions now that their stage is so much more vast, their isolation is more acute and their need for delivering results is immediate?
The reality is often that organisations have simply not realised that these areas of development are crucial to success and leveraging improved performance financially. The amateur Multi-Unit Manager will have the phone, the laptop, the car and the basic skills to do the job. However, doing the job and delivering exceptional results are very different entities with the latter the result of a combined focus on the task and the emotions of the role. A Multi-Unit Managers emotions and the regulation of them are key in motivating a team to greatness and a great opportunity for an organisation to invest in to super charge performance and jump ahead of the competitive set. After all the service industry is now in a phase we call the experiential economy where it is less what you deliver and more what and how you make a customer feel - so surely investing in emotions is all part of the changing landscape of the service delivery industry to the experiential and often virtual one!
Imagine taking an actor from an amateur dramatic society performing in the local church hall to an audience of 50 and then dropping them onto a stage in the West End in front of 500 people. Of course, they will have a better script and more expensive costumes but without helping them master their emotions they would crumble and negatively impact the audience who had paid to see the production. Word of mouth would spread negatively and show performance revenues would be down year on year so why do we consider doing this for a Multi-Unit Manager acceptable?
The key to high performing Multi-Unit Managers is to provide technical skills training, tools to do the job at a physical level combined with the provision of emotional skills training leading to enhanced self regulation and connection with their audience!
In addition, Purple Story understands that one of the biggest limiting factors in the modern workplace is confidence. A lack of confidence can be the difference between fulfilling one's own potential or not and as such is critical to tackle head on. Purple Story specialises in Confidence Bootcamps and will be a hosting a FREE workshop for 10 female decision makers in March, please do not hesitate to get in touch for more information.
Purple Story was founded as an organisation to do just the above and could be the missing link for helping home grown operators excel quickly closing the gap from amateur to experienced. If you would like a chat or just want to know more please do not hesitate to contact me or drop me an email email@example.com! The question to ask yourself is are you training your operators the skills of acting and social connection and if not what have you got to lose?
Introducing Purple Story
Following a career spanning 3 decades within the business defining disciplines of people, marketing and operations, Karen Turton came to the realisation that there was one common theme that had the potential to either supercharge performance or limit an organisation’s possibilities. This was not knowledge or skill, albeit they are both important, in fact it was communication and the behaviours surrounding it. The manner in which teams built relationships with each other, managers provided feedback to employees, the presence of strong and believable values and the ability for organisations to be able to communicate successfully with their guests or clients was critical to the success of the organisation.
Karen realised that, like authors, a business starts with an idea of what a successful ending might look like and a plan to structure and deliver the story is created. Along the way the story can twist and turn and each word change can make a significant impact on the ending. Business is the same and no outcome is predetermined that cannot be changed with the right focus on communication and behaviours.
Purple Story was founded from a passion of storytelling and helping organisations drive their true potential through the communication abilities and behaviours of their teams. After all, most teams have the skill they just sometimes require a helping hand to pull the threads of the idea together. This is where Purple Story steps in. From helping individuals find their own story, to connecting teams to each others story to landing new sales contracts by effectively communicating an organisations story, success comes from creating bespoke and experiential stories that are connective and drive enhanced performance. Purple Story helps individuals and organisations create successful and personalised stories that have the ability be remarkable in today’s crowded and complex world.
Every Story starts Somewhere! Every Story has the potential to be Remarkable!
Purple Story enhances business communications to drive organisational potential.
Tagged as: Multi Unit Manager
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