Features

Published on March 24th, 2015 | by Millennium Magazine Staff

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Do You Have What it Takes to Be a Manager?

by Kate Supino

Getting your first promotion to manager is cause for celebration.

Obviously, your supervisor saw something in you that gave him the confidence to put the management reins in your hand.

You may be nervous about leading the team, but that’s natural for a first time manager, especially if you’re managing a department of people who used to be your colleagues. The situation can be tricky.

As the following article shows, here are 4 tips for a first time manager that will keep you in good stead with the company you are working for.

1. Don’t let the power go to your head

There’s a subtle difference between being a manager and being a boss.

A boss tells people what to do. A manager gives people instructions and then guides them toward their goals.

You’ll have a much better experience managing your former colleagues if you act like a manager instead of a boss.

Managers respect the talents and skills of their team members, and allow some freedom in the work flow as long as the general path is still heading in the right direction.

Resist the urge to tell your team members what to do at every turn. Trust that they, too, are where they are in the company for a good reason.

2. Don’t upset the apple cart yet

As a new manager, you’re probably eager to impress your supervisor to let them know they’ve made the right decision in promoting you. But there’s plenty of time to show your boss what you’re made of.

Don’t make the mistake of putting a fast track on implementing all those change ideas you’ve had over the years.

The very fact that your team has a new manager is change enough for right now. Let people settle in to the fact that they have a new manager.

Allow yourself time to establish your authority. Then, as you become one with the position, you can introduce new ideas one at a time, slowly. This will make it easier on you and your department.

3. Remember your place

In your previous role, you probably had office friends in the department whom you hung out with after work. You may have flirted lightly with colleagues or pulled harmless pranks on coworkers to break up the work day.

As a manager, you won’t be able to do those things anymore, as much as you might like to.

It’s critical that you remember your place as a leader, and not turn yourself into a parody, like Michael in the television show, “The Office.” People may accuse you of “not being fun anymore,” but it’s not your job to be fun. It’s your job to manage.

4. Don’t be afraid to lead

As a first time manager, you may feel awkward about handing out assignments and delegating tasks.

In that case, you may find yourself doing work that rightfully should be done by members of your staff, in order to avoid asking them to do it. This is a huge mistake that must be avoided.

Your staff will not respect you more if you do their work for them.

You have to summon the courage to delegate tasks, insist on status reports and discipline those who fail to deliver. These are the things that are required of a manager.

So do you have what it takes to be a manager?

If you’ve already been promoted, someone already believes in you.

Now it’s time for you to believe in yourself.

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