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Tips for Moving into Management
11 April 2017
As a first-time manager, you are likely to encounter challenges and responsibilities that you have never faced before. You have demonstrated that you are skilled at your job, so now it is now your turn to help the team that you are managing. To be successful in the role, preparation and a willingness to learn new skills is essential. Here are some tips to help ensure your transition into management runs smoothly.
To make a successful move into management, you must establish exactly what is expected of you in your new role. What are the immediate/long term work priorities? What are the key problems to solve? What are the risks you are likely to face? Answering these questions will help you understand where you need to place your focus early on. Equally important is communicating clear, specific and measurable goals to your new team.
Develop Key Skills
Critical management skills in areas such as problem-solving, motivating others and evaluating performance may not have been a part of your previous roles. Ask your company for support in terms of coaching, mentoring or training so that you can develop the skills required to perform your role effectively. You can also educate yourself by referencing management websites, business textbooks, or investigating local courses.
Learn to Lead
Moving into a management role involves more than just supervising projects, people and schedules. You will also be expected to perform the role of a leader, which involves communicating a vision of success, enabling your team to do their best work and inspiring others to achieve their potential. To be an effective manager, learn how to incorporate leadership skills into your management style so that you can successfully grow and develop the people you manage.
Most new managers are promoted right out of the role that they excelled in. A key skill to develop early is the ability to let go of the ‘doing’ and give others an opportunity to grow. Your role has shifted from a high performing team member to that of team coach, which means developing, empowering and inspiring others to excel. Effective delegating is about using your experience to guide others; you will dictate the ‘what’ (outcome) and ‘why’ (purpose) but allow people to choose the ‘how’ (method) for themselves.
Emulate Key Attributes
Think about your previous managers and the attributes you admired in them. How did they treat you? How did they earn your trust? What did you respect about their behavior? What did they teach you? Use this reflection to help guide your behavior as a first-time manager. Seeking the feedback of a trusted mentor is also valuable in helping you understand where your attributes and areas for development lie.
Even if you are doing everything right as a manager, it is easy to feel like you don’t belong in your position when you first assume your role. These tips on can help you overcome feelings of fraud at work.