At the heart of every good team is a great manager.

As an independent community pharmacy owner or manager, you’re responsible for more of your team’s success than you might think. The way you train, motivate and manage your employees helps determine your pharmacy’s success. Fortunately, you can enhance your pharmacy’s success by actively cultivating the key skills and characteristics that great managers share.

Start developing these skills to become a great manger in your pharmacy.

Strong listener

The best managers know how to listen to their employees. When you listen and try to understand employees’ complaints, concerns and suggestions, you’ll be able to create solutions that address the real issues and you’ll be able to implement effective improvements.

Plus, when employees know you listen to them, they’re more likely to feel like valued members of your team, and they’ll be more motivated to contribute to your pharmacy’s success.

Comfortable with change

The ability to adapt to changing situations is key, because as a manager, you’re responsible for pushing your pharmacy to keep up with the industry and with your patients wants and needs.

If you’re stuck in the old ways of doing things, you’ll never be able to reinvent your workflow or implement new approaches to patient counseling that might improve your business. The best managers are always ready to try new technology and solutions, and adjust them accordingly to work for their business.

Technical skills

Every manager needs a basic proficiency in the technical skills he expects his employees to have. That way, managers can train employees and demonstrate how they expect those technical responsibilities to be performed.

As a manager, it’s important not to let your technical proficiency lag. For example, if you get a new computer system, make sure you’re the first person trained on how to operate it.

Keep your skills sharp by regularly attending continuing education (CE) sessions and practicing consistently.

Effective communicator

To be an effective manager, you have to be able to clearly communicate with your employees.

Start the moment you hire employees by communicating your expectations for the position. Maintain communication by updating employees about the latest news and changes at your pharmacy during a weekly staff meeting. Or, stay in touch by creating an internal newsletter. Make it known that you’re open to communicating with employees by creating office hours or establishing an open-door policy.


Great managers have a vision for themselves, their employees and their business. They clearly communicate their goals to the team and create measurable steps to work toward achieving those goals.

Start crafting a vision for your pharmacy by writing a business plan. Be sure to explain your goals, and how your employees can help contribute to them, so they can support you as you implement your business plan.