Revive This Timeless Management Technique to Improve Your Leadership

Management by walking around is a timeless management technique used to retain top talent. It helps avoid surprises when the 360 reviews come out, builds bonds that keep top talent, and earns the respect of employees. Management by walking around keeps you visible, allows you to connect with employees, share ideas, and get front-line suggestions on how to improve. Consequently, it will improve your leadership rating.

Management by walking around became popular in the 1980s when Tom Peters and Robert Waterman wrote about it in their bestseller In Search of Excellence. It helps managers feel less scary because employees frequently see and interact with them. In today’s technology-driven workplace, managing by email has become too commonplace. Because time is scarce, managers don’t meet with employees informally. As a result, management by walking around is a timeless management technique that should be brought back into your routine.

Unfiltered pulse check

How employees feel about the company, their job, or the overall mood of the team. Because you are face to face with employees, you not only hear what they are saying but can observe body language and facial expressions. What isn’t said is as important as what is said. Management by walking around allows you to have a better understanding of how people feel. It improves your leadership rating because you can empathize with employees and make positive changes to their environment.


See theory in practice with management by walking around

Managers tend to make matters worse when they implement their ideas. Because managers are levels away from execution, they can be blind to the impacts their ideas have on employee job satisfaction and performance. Management by walking around allows you to see your theories in practice. It allows you to make meaningful changes that positively improve working conditions. As a result, you will improve your leadership rating.

New ways for old things

What better place to get new ways to do old things than from the people doing them daily? Management by walking around puts you in front of the people directly responsible for delivering work to your customers. You will not find a better source of ideas and techniques to improve processes than from those on the front line. Listening to, and implementing their ideas help employees feel valued and respected so it will improve your leadership rating.

Understanding how they feel you are doing improves your leadership rating

Smart managers understand the importance of employee feedback. There is no better way to get it than management by walking around. Informal face time helps people feel more comfortable about providing feedback. When they see you act on that feedback they will gain more confidence in you as their manager. The more confidence employees have in their manager, the harder they will work for them. There is no better way to earn respect and improve your leadership rating than regular, informal face time.


Management by walking around is a timeless management technique that brings tremendous value. It improves relationships, morale, and performance. Management by walking around is free to implement. To get started block time off your calendar to walk around.

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Jason Cortel is currently the Director of Global Workforce Management for a leading technology company. He has been in customer service, marketing, and sales services for over 20 years. In addition, he has extensive experience in offshore and nearshore outsourcing. Jason is an avid Star Trek fan and is on a mission to change the universe by helping people develop professionally. He is driven to help managers and leaders lead their teams better. Jason is also a veteran in creating talent and office cultures.

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