Many successful people get promoted into management and quickly find the pressure to be higher than anything they felt in the past. As an individual contributor, it is much easier to control the outcomes of your work. It may not seem like that at times, but you have a lot more control than when you are a manager of people. I am not referring to people that receive a management title and have nobody to manage. A real manager has the authority and responsibility to manage: financial performance (includes holding others accountable), people activities (hire, keep and grow people), and positioning/strategizing the firm or department in a way that provides a competitive advantage in the marketplace.
One key issue a manager faces is that there are always detractors within the larger organization and the smaller team. These people may have been detractors all along, felt they should have gotten your position, or do not know you well enough to realize you are qualified for your position. In his book, “Managing Right for the First Time,” David C. Baker recommends that managers not overreact and to approach detractors as follows:
The key in any management position is to be a leader that staff wants to follow. This does not mean being weak or attempting to be everyone’s friend. Instead, Baker identifies the following characteristics as key to being someone people want to follow.
If you are entering management for the first time or experiencing less-than-optimal cooperation from your team, challenge yourself with the above questions and consider reading “Managing Right for the First Time,” by David C. Baker, which currently has a five-star rating on Amazon.com. Missing any of the above characteristics can hinder your effectiveness. It takes a strong manager to keep all of them in perspective. It is natural to violate them when detractors enter the picture or when encountering challenges in a role.
Howard Shore is an executive leadership coach and founder of Activate Group Inc., based in Miami, Florida. His firm works with companies to deliver transformational management and business coaching to executive leadership. To learn more about executive leadership coaching through AGI, please click here or contact Howard at [phone link=”true”] or email him.