Undergraduate Blog / Career Development

How To Manage Like A Pro

“Hi,my name is Salome. I’m from South Africa but I study at a college in the U.S. called Babson College.” This is the standard introduction I give at work to visitors all the time but there is one big question I always get asked, “What is your educational qualification?” I confidently say that I have finished my first year in business school and the next question is, “do you have an MBA?”

The answer is simple. Freshmen at Babson should be given MBA’s because going through Foundations of Management and Entrepreneurship gets you ready to manage all kinds of projects. Managing like a pro is a skill that I learnt without realizing through the various activities I am part of at Babson. I am currently planning an event that shows children different aspects of water and the importance of water conservation. I have learnt the following important things about managing like a pro-

Deadlines are your best friend: My team is committed to many other projects so I give them reasonable deadlines. I also constantly remind them and check up on them, not just about the event but about their lives in general. Getting to know your team mates makes them feel comfortable with talking to you about anything even deadlines or extending deadlines. Every time my team members see me, they say I remind them of the “water” event. Sadly, I have become The Deadline Incarnate.

Be a friend: My team members have shown me a lot of respect considering that I am the youngest member of the team. I have created friendships with all of them because it maintains mutual respect. Being a friend means being considerate and honing in on everyone’s strengths and interests. Since I have the busiest team members on campus, I always offer to help them in any way. I am willing to stretch deadlines in light of their schedules and I know being a friend sounds counter-productive as a manager but your team members will respect you more.

Motivate strategically: Motivation is the spicy word that gets tongues burning. I have met individually with my team members and got them hyped about the event. In addition to getting them excited, I encourage them to implement their ideas in their own style. Another secret I learnt is sharing everyone’s progress to others because it somehow encourages healthy competition. You have to be very deliberate about getting busy people to focus on a project or else they will get swallowed by all the busyness.

Emulate and ask for help: The Media department recently held an awesome event and I am going to use some of their ideas and concepts. There is a lot that could be emulated from what they did. Since everyone at work is a buzz of creative energy, from the scientists to the business people to the artists, collaboration from different departments is the crucial ingredient to pulling of a great event.

Managing like a pro has nothing to do with being a “pro” but it has everything to do with the people you work with. Encourage your people and get them excited about the project, that’s all it takes. Ultimately, we’re doing this for awesome little kids and that is enough to excite everyone.