Newly Promoted to Manager? Here’s How to Succeed.
So, you got promoted to manager – congratulations!
However, managing people is very different from being responsible for your own performance. While some ambitious new managers think they need to come in guns-a-blazing with a “What I say goes” attitude, others may feel stifled by the perceived need to know literally everything.
Both are not the way to go if you want to create a productive work environment with a team that trusts you and feels supported by you. If you’re nodding your head in agreement, read on for a list of tips to help you get started.
- Never coach/reprimand in front of others
That type of behavior is disrespectful and will not only humiliate and anger the employee but will send a negative message to the rest of your team that you are an unfair manager. That’s the type of manager no one likes to work for, and you will feel it.
- Allow yourself time for decisions
When you’re new, you haven’t gotten used to the sort of decisions you will have to make or the common problems that arise. Someone may approach you to make an exception or approve something they already know shouldn’t be done.
Don’t rush. Instead, tell them you will get back to them. t’s important not to wing it and cause possible problems with hasty decision-making.
- Set boundaries
It may be hard to establish boundaries with employees who used to be your friends and who you now manage. Some may be professional and can handle it, while others will either resent you or think they can still interact with you the same way. Either way, you are no longer their work buddy, you are their manager, and they need to be aware of it. It may take having a private conversation with them to explain how things will be different at work, so they aren’t surprised with your change in behavior.
- Be careful with sharing information
Don’t share behind-the-scenes news with your team if it shouldn’t be made public yet. Yes, they will spread it to others. Don’t be tempted to share bits of information to make an employee more loyal or feel closer to you – it will backfire. In the end, you are responsible for keeping information private, so avoid any “off the record” discussions with your team.
- Let your team see you
If you have your own office, don’t live in it, and keep your door always closed. Having an open-door policy means you are approachable and available, as your team needs to see you. In remote setting, keep regular catch-ups online.
- Build on change gradually
Your employees and supervisors will be watching you closely to see how you handle yourself and how your team performs. If the department was running well before you got promoted, sometimes coming in and making drastic changes can rub staff the wrong way.
Sure, you’re ready to make your mark and improve, which is great, and it’s needed. However, before overhauling the department or procedures, evaluate how things are going now, because the process might not be broken. Your attention would be better off focused on areas needing improvements.
- Walk the talk
If you set standards for your team to follow, you should do the same. Enough said.
- You are no longer the expert – you are the manager
It’s your job to make sure things get done and that they get done correctly. Yes, you may still excel and be the go-to person for your knowledge, but it won’t be your primary duty, and it won’t last for long. Chances are, you will get rusty in procedures you no longer do daily.
- It may feel a bit lonely at the top
You went from having many coworkers to interact with on all levels to just you and maybe another manager. Your employees will not feel free to take their lunch breaks with you or share their life stories like before, as now you can judge them and possibly use that knowledge for management decisions.
It won’t work well if you go out partying with your employees after work and then come in the next day needing to coach one of them for subpar performance. This doesn’t mean you have to be harsh and cold to them – by no means should you be that way. But you will need to be professional and unbiased.
Wrapping It Up
Managing people can be very rewarding (albeit challenging at times), and kudos to you for working your way up. With time, things will fall into place, and you will feel more settled in.
Be active, be fair, be optimistic, and be patient, as you will learn something new every day that will help you develop into the outstanding manager you want to be!