A Basic Management Skill is Typing

Alright, so this article is a little “tongue in cheek,” but if you want to succeed in management you had better learn to type. A manager’s basic trade is thinking, acting and communicating. The manager, by definition, is someone who gets the work done through the efforts of others. Managers must inspire and motivate. It’s difficult to accomplish this if you’re spending a significant part of your day typing emails, letters, reports, etc.


I’m an “old school” manager, who could delegate work and had secretaries who knew “Gregg shorthand.” I spent my time planning, organizing, leading and controlling. I was not tethered to a computer keyboard. Those were the good old days. How could I have known that my most valuable high school class would prove to be, you guessed it-Typing I. I look back on my naiveté as justified by the environment of that era. Now managers must type to survive! Of course I still type with my right index finger, envious of those who can type with two fingers.

How did we get to this situation? The “division of labor” seems almost non-existent when it comes to clerical duties. Now, we have executives making $200 an hour “hunting and pecking” their own emails, correspondence or text messages. Is this the most efficient and effective use of labor?


Typing seems here to stay. Voice-recognition software is still in its infancy and not yet ready for “prime time,” but almost! That will be a happy day. In the meantime, there is software available to help the executive or manager improve their typing proficiency. Commonly referred to as “Typing Tutors,” most of these “packages” can be purchased for a reasonable fee, although there is also freeware available; just Google it.

The objective of these programs is to assist the manager in increasing his typing speed. “Touch typing” is the ultimate goal so that you will not have to look at the keyboard when typing.

You probably spend more time than you want to entering data into your computer. To be more productive and relieve some of your stress, learn to improve your typing skills. Because it looks like managers will be performing those distasteful clerical tasks for the foreseeable future.