Tasks of effective management

The main tasks are based on the classification proposed by Malik. Furthermore, I read a lot management books and blogs and tried to create a big picture and putting the pieces together. So i decided to add subtasks to each main task. The subtasks are the most important tasks from my point of view. I am team lead and architect with focus on agile development. That is why the tasks, tools and principles are put together in a way that fit best to agile teams. I added "Handle conflicts" as main task in order to establish some tools and principles and because it is necessary for the fulfilment of all other main tasks. This page is growing iteratively, so the matrix may change over the time. If you have feedback, let me know your thoughts e.g. using twitter or email. I would appreciate it.

Setting Goals

Setting objectives determines the direction, provides orientation and creates motivation. It's not just about global objectives, but equally to individual goals of team members. There are personal goals, team goals and your goals. Most important is to explain the relevance of all goals or objectives. Most difficult part is to define clear, simple and trackable goals.

Determine resourcesBudgetingFuture orientation
Regulate responsibilitiesAppraisal interviewResult orientation
Set out in writingTarget AgreementEconomism
Formulate clear objectivesTime ScheduleA few but important
Clarify relevanceRhetoricPredictability

Encourage People

The development of people is an important task. Maybe the most important one. And not only for team leaders. Properly executed, it produces implicitly satisfaction. Self-organized teams should be the goal. It can be achieved using empowerment, because compexity can be tackled only if control is distributed to more than one person, that means to the team.

Focus On StrengthsSkill profilesCourage
DelegateAssignment ControlReliability
Empower peopleError cultureCuriosity
Reinforce ResponsibilitySituational LeadershipCommitment
Recognize stressCharacter-based leadingIndustriousness


Organizing includes all organizational activities that are essential for performing effectively. Being a good team manager means to reflect yourself and your team periodically. Not only in peoples efficiency but also in working conditions and process view.

Minimize distractionsSystematic Garbage CollectionCustomer orientation
Developing structuresJob DesignVisibility
Regular reflectionWorking MethodologyFocus
Optimize conditionsResource planningFarsightedness


Leaders must be able to decide accurately and understandable as possible. If decisions are not delegated to major team members they should be communicated to the team in order to achieve maximum acceptance. Difficult decisions should not be made without having discovered alternatives. It is also not a shame to wait several weeks for critical moves.

Let participateMeetingsAuthenticity
Gather factsQuestioning techniquesInitiative
Discover alternativesLet propose solutionsIntegrity
Make conscious decisionsIntuitionDecisiveness
Establish acceptanceDiscussion techniquesEndurance


Blind faith is naive. At the end you are in charge of the team and the results. Therefore use controlling appropriately. This can be supported using reports, standups, shoulder glances or just small talk. Depending on the maturity of the team more or less control is necessary.

Rate and judgeReportsSimplicity
Minimize controlsSamplingTrust
Act individuallyConstructive feedbackContribution to the whole
Value wisely AppraisalCredibility

Handle Conflicts

This point is not a task that Malik defined. It is listed here as a main task because treating conflicts is part of any other task. So maybe call it a meta task. Conflicts are everywhere, like in assigning work, making decisions, meetings or just between team members. And a main task of a manager is to handle those conflicts.

ModeratePerceive value freeSerenity
Reflect conflict behaviorPositive attitudeEsteem
Appreciate feedbackFeedback CultureOpenness
Respond positivelyRespond confidentlyDiversity
Criticize advisedlyBody languageRespect


  • Fredmund Malik, Führen, Leisten, Leben: Wirksames Management für eine neue Zeit
  • Jurgen Appelo, Management 3.0 - Leading Agile Developers, Developing Agile Developers
  • Markus Jotzo, Loslassen für Führungskräfte: Meine Mitarbeiter schaffen das
  • Diana von Kopp, Führungskraft - und was jetzt? Vom Kollegen zum Vorgesetzten
  • Kunz, Gunnar C., Vom Mitarbeiter zur Führungskraft
  • Doppler, Fuhrmann, Lebbe-Waschke,Bert Voigt, Unternehmenswandel gegen Widerstände: Change Management mit den Menschen
  • Günther Wirkus, Seminar "Leiten von Projektteams"
  • Dr. Jörg Preußig, Seminar "Wirksame Kommunikation im Kundenkontakt"