In the era of the pandemic, the role of people managers is in constant flux, as is their workforce. Daily, managers must think about the organization, their individual department, their team, individual team member needs, and their own responsibilities as an employee. Our client, a global technology provider, saw an opportunity to deliver a set of tools aimed at helping people managers more successfully stay connected to, lead, and develop their teams.
We started by framing our hypotheses around the multiple journeys within the people manager experience (what we already know). These hypotheses became foundational for one-on-one conversations with managers where we learned about their specific needs, challenges, processes, current tools usage, and opportunity areas to inform future product roadmaps.
We conducted more than 40 in-depth discussions with managers across six countries, with varying levels of responsibility, and from companies that varied in size and industry. The number of direct reports was also taken into consideration. These variations allowed our clients to identify several unique manager types that need to be considered during tool development.
This exploratory research shaped our client’s understanding of people managers at a foundational level across their organization. In the near term, the way our client looks at and thinks about people managers has been transformed. Allowing our client, in the longer term, to more impactfully develop tools that aid managers in their quest to advance and retain high-performing employees.