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Effective Professional Managers and Management Model

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Project Management
Wordcount: 2785 words Published: 11th Sep 2017

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The reflection on and critical analysis of effective professional managers in relation to an effective management model.

(Wilber, 2015)

In this report, we look at the UN Model (profile of an effective manager). I choose to use the UN Model as my base for this assignment because I find it easy to understand with the way that it’s broken down levels of managerial experience and because of the values it holds. I also interview 2 experienced managers and asked them about their roles, their success and how they improved as a manager. I reflected and rated myself on the UN Model to get a feeling for how well I would do in a managerial role.    

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Values – the ‘driver’ of managerial effectiveness

The values of a professional manager according to the UN Model includes Integrity, Professionalism, and Respect for diversity. To sum up the middle managers’ role per the UN Model they must be a role model to staff, be decisive and understand cultures differences. As a Senior Manager, the UN Model expects “resilience in the face of external pressures” (S.A.R.L, ND), continuous improvement and to “intentionally build a diverse workforce” (S.A.R.L, ND). To the UN Model being an Organisational leader means building a culture of integrity.

Emotional competence

To the UN Model having emotional competence means to be Self-aware, have self-confidence, emotional self-control, to be conscientious, optimistic, achievement oriented, to have empathy and discretion. As named by the UN Model; “Detailers” are managers that don’t follow these guidelines. Being a manager doesn’t mean only managing employees work but also means managing how they feel in the workplace.

Conceptual competence

To the UN Model having conceptual competence means always having an eye on “their environment and the world beyond it” (S.A.R.L, ND). These managers practice talking to people around them keep a clear understanding of the work and organisational environment. Effective managers apply their knowledge of concepts, system thinking and pattern recognition.

Technical/substantive competence

The UN Model tells us that middle managers must be able to “apply and share their knowledge” (S.A.R.L, ND). Senior managers should “create knowledge sharing and learning mechanisms” (S.A.R.L, ND). Organisational leaders should be able to “develop a knowledge sharing and learning culture” (S.A.R.L, ND). The fundamentals of technical/substantive competence per the UN Model are Knowledge and information management, knowledge networks, knowledge sharing, coaching and developing others and continuous learning and development.

Managing people

In the UN Model, being able to manage people means having great communication, teamwork, motivation, and means being able to manage individuals’ performance. A middle manager should be able to effectively manage people. The expectation of senior managers is for them to create an enabling environment. At an organisational level, managers should be able to “create a high performance culture” (S.A.R.L, ND).

Managing action and change

To the UN Model; managers should have strong and reliable action and change management, decision-making, creativity and innovation, they should also be client and result oriented. At the middle manager level; managers should be able to make things happen and support change. At the senior manager level; managers should be able to anticipate and lead change. Organisational leaders should drive for excellence and create a culture around searching for positive change.

Managing across organisational boundaries

“Effective managers have a finely tuned understanding of the department’s surface and deeper structures” (S.A.R.L, ND). The UN Model pushes for strong organisational awareness, building networks and alliances, and positively influencing in the work environment.


Rating (1 = bad, 10 = great)

Explanation/critical analysis




I do what I say I’m going to do when I’m going to do it.

I say what I think is ethical even if it’s not the popular opinion.



I make myself at home and sometimes assume people are fine with me being so comfortable at work.

Respect for diversity


I like meeting knew cultures and working with them.

I have a bit of a lack of knowledge when it comes to understanding sensitive topics and cultural differences.

Emotional Competence



Interested in learning more about myself and how I am during work.

Am aware of my emotions and understand what I can do to make myself feel better.

Self confidence


Am decisive.

Can sometimes be unsure about where I fit in and can be easily effected by something someone says.

Emotional self-control


Can deal with someone difficult without raising my voice.

I can be tactful.



Keep promises.

Careful in work.

Accept responsibility for mistakes.



Try to constantly look at both sides.

Can sometimes be lost in disadvantages of doing something.

Achievement orientation


Don’t always push for the absolute best.

Can sometimes lack motivation.

When there is something I need to do, I work at it until it is fully done.



Am tactful.

Could take body language on board more.



Respects privacy.

I can keep things confidential if needed.

Conceptual Competence

Use of concepts


I can apply concepts to many different things.

Systems thinking


Can’t always predict consequences of quick fix solutions.

Pattern recognition


Can apply concepts to a new situation.

Can identify patterns quite easily.

Technical/substantive competence

Knowledge and information management


I can identify trends and best practice.

Knowledge networks


Can make formal and informal connections.

Knowledge sharing


Try to share my knowledge as much as possible and in many ways.

Coaching and developing others


Am interested in helping others learn

Continuous learning and development


Interested in new developments.

Keen to learn.

Managing people



I can communicate clearly with many different cultures.



Work well with others.

Try to include everyone.



Can sometimes leave things that don’t feel as necessary behind.

Managing individual performance


I use praise accordingly.

Find it easy to address poor performance.

Managing action and change

Action and change management


I like making sure things get done.



I am very decisive.

I can say “no” when it is needed.

Creativity and innovation


I try to think of new ways of doing things all the time.

Client orientation


I can anticipate clients’ needs before they decide they need it.

Results orientation


I am interested in rewarding good results and try to keep the focus on the result and how we get there.

Managing across organizational boundaries

Organizational awareness


Need work on understanding the legalities and limits of organisations

Building networks and alliances


I am interested in building strong and positive alliances inside and outside of the company.



I try to positively influence people to do the right thing by example.

In this investigation we asked questions about the interviewees management rolls.

In both interviews, we asked the same questions:

  1. What business are/where you in?
  2. How long have you been working in this field?
  3. How successful was/is the business?
  4. How did you help the success of the business?
  5. What do you do when people start a job?
  6. What do you think makes a good manager?
  7. How do you improve yourself as a manager?
  8. Do you have any advice for someone going into management?

In the first interview, we talked to a man named Arwyn.

His answers to our questions were as follows:

  1. He was the head of department at a university for 16 years, also a senior lecturer.
  2. He has been working in the education field for 25 years.
  3. He was in the business from 15 students all the way to 400 students.
  4. He had many long-standing staff and says teamwork and collective responsibility were ways he contributed to making the business successful.
  5. When somebody starts working under his management he conducts training, he observes their ability, he assigns a mentor and monitors their progress.
  6. He said that good managers are loyal to the organisation, honest, teamwork oriented, they have integrity, they understand the organisation and they think about what they can do for the organisation; not what the organisation can do for them.
  7. He says that managing is always a learning process and involves sharing experiences with others.
  8. His advice for someone going into management was to be humble and patient.

Relation to un model

It seems Arwyn put great value on empathy, knowledge sharing, coaching and developing others, teamwork and influencing staff positively.

He took the interview very seriously and presented himself professionally. This shows that he has great values as a manager.

In the second interview, we talked to a woman named Parvinder.

Her answers to our questions were as follows:

  1. She worked in a Café 7 days a week as a manager.
  2. She has been working in management for 15 years.
  3. The business was very successful for a number of years but the recession hit the business hard.
  4. She feels she helped the success of the business by keeping with the times.
  5. When people start the job, she goes through an introduction, an orientation and training.
  6. She said a good manager should motivate, inspire and lead.
  7. As a manager, she improved herself by learning from her mistakes and by looking for new ways to innovate.
  8. Her advice for people going into management was that it isn’t easy, you need people skills and a passion to lead.

Relation to un model

I believe Parvinder has strong conceptual competence and organisational awareness by the way she looks for ways to improve, I think she tries to provide a place for teamwork to thrive.

How I felt

In both interviews, I felt confident in the questions I was asking, I feel that I could have asked more conversational questions to make both me and the interviewee feel more comfortable.

What I saw

When Arwyn came into the room he asked if he could sit down and he also put on a tie. Both interviewees where slightly reserved at the start but near the end they both felt more comfortable.

What I thought

I thought both interviewees where very knowledgeable about management, I noticed they hardly gave closed answers and that they held strong values around professionalism.

What I learnt

I learnt the value of working as a team, being professional and having integrity. I also learnt that being a manager or working in general is more about what you can do for the organisation more than what the organisation can do for you.

What I would do differently in an interview setting

I would try and make more small talk at the start to try and make the interviewees more comfortable, I would also try tailoring my questions to suit the interviewees better by implying certain answers.

What I could/would do better in management

If I were a manager I would try to hold strong value on presenting myself professionally, managing with teamwork and clear communication. I would make sure empathy was one of my main goals to make sure my team was in a positive mindset and happy.

I think that both interviewees where very knowledgeable about management. They both put great value on teamwork and developing a communication culture. I feel Arwyn’s management style was much more collective and team oriented while Parvinder’s style was more about leading and resembled a more classic idea of management.

In this report, we looked briefly at the Kotter Model and more in depth into the UN Model. We looked at my personal reflection on the UN Model and applied the model to two interviews with managers with a lot of experience.


S.A.R.L, M. (ND, ND ND). ProfileManager_v4. Retrieved from HR Portal: https://hr.un.org/sites/hr.un.org/files/Profile%20of%20an%20Effective%20Manager_0.pdf

Wilber, K. (2015, December 15). A Brief Look At Management Practices. Retrieved from Linkdin: http://staffingstream.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/supplier-management.jpg


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