5 Tips for Rookie Managers

August 27, 2010 · by Allison Porter · Filed Under Choices, Previous · 1 Comment

You accepted a management position and no doubt hit the ground running. It is dawning on you that it is no longer enough to be a talented contributor.  Now you have to bring out the best in others in order to get the job done.  Recognizing that you are back in learning mode is the first step.  You also need a transition strategy. Here are five tips to help develop your game plan:

1 – Let go of your old job.  You may literally still be carrying the workload of your previous position; more often, you are carrying the idea of yourself in your old position around in your head, leading you to over-rely on your expertise. To really embrace the challenges of your new role, you first need to let go of your old one.

2 – Form a team. Assess the talent you have and get the right people in the right jobs.  Talk with each person and learn what they care about, what they know, and where their passions lie.  Be clear about the team’s objectives and set up systems for meeting and reporting that are efficient and impactful.  Be their champion and their advocate.

3 – Identify short term wins. You are there for a reason:  to show results.  You may have long term goals and issues that need to be dealt with before real progress can be made.  But even in a difficult context, you can find refreshing and energizing ways to demonstrate that you and your team can make things happen.

4 – Manage up. You may be so eager to prove yourself that you don’t question authority or admit you need help.  You may be waiting for your supervisor to reach out to you.  Take charge of those relationships and help the people you report to do a better job by being clear about what you need to succeed.

5 – Take risks. The flipside of not admitting when you need help is when you are so afraid to make mistakes that you check every decision before making a move.  Trust your instincts and recognize that experience is your best teacher.  Ask for a sounding board if you need it, but don’t give your new found power away.

Are you a new manager?  I’d be curious to hear your reflections on your experience and tips you have for others in your position.


One Response to “5 Tips for Rookie Managers”

  1. Susan Shearouse on September 21st, 2010 3:58 pm

    Wise advice. So often people who are hired for their technical expertise are promoted into management jobs and need a new set of skills for sucess. You’ve identified some keys to refocusing in this new dimension.

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