Becoming a manager is a position many people aspire to be in, and you might have recently been promoted to a manager of your team. It is a varied and interesting role in which no two days are the same and, of course, you will be on a higher salary. However, managerial positions can be notoriously stressful. As well as increased responsibilities, you will be in a higher position than colleagues who were previously your equals. As such, you might struggle to juggle your new managerial role with your existing personal relationships. To help you thrive in your new position, here are some tips for how you can be an inspiring and effective manager.
One of the biggest challenges you will face when you have been promoted to a managerial position is adjusting to managing colleagues who previously were your work equals. You may be concerned being in a higher position and the responsibilities this involves, such as delegating tasks and providing critical feedback, will jeopardize close personal relationships and friendships that you have built with your colleagues. As such, you may fall into a somewhat weak managerial style as you are reluctant to address any issues and potentially jeopardize friendships.
Practicing assertiveness is a more effective alternative as it is a communication style built on mutual respect. Key to this is clearly communicating your own needs while also acknowledging the other person’s needs. For example, if there is an urgent task that you need to delegate to a member of your team, clearly explain what needs to be done and work with them to renegotiate their current workload. Being assertive means that you will maintain the respect of your colleagues while also ensuring that necessary tasks are completed.
Pursue further education and training
Learning is a life-long process: it doesn’t simply end at your high school or college graduation ceremony. Progressing in your career inevitably means identifying areas of weakness and continuing your education in one form or another to develop your skillset. For instance, you might feel that you would benefit from developing assertive communication skills and enroll on a course teaching effective managerial and business communication, or you might want to return to university and get your Master’s degree.
If you are reluctant to return to education due to the commitment, it involves, be reassured that there are ways you can incorporate study around a full-time job. Many universities are offering an increasing number of programs online so that you have greater flexibility to study whenever and wherever you want, instead of being obliged to attend a set number of classes in a higher education institution. So if, for example, you want to progress in your education and career with a Master’s in Business Administration, look for the best online MBA in Canada. Alternatively, you could choose instead to pursue separate modules at a time. This enables you to only take on as much study as you can handle, and you can easily put your credits towards a degree program further down the line if you so choose.
Focus on team building
As a manager, you will relate to your employees both on an individual level and together as a team. It is essential that you work on building relationships within your team to ensure that everyone works well together and creates an atmosphere of mutual respect and trust. This will create a strong team that is able to work well together and produce work that is of a high standard and beneficial to the company, as well as something that your team can take pride in. Put simply; your staff will be more productive if they get along with each other.
As such, you might like to organize dedicated team-building events on a regular basis to help your team practice their collaborative and teamwork skills and get to know each other better. This might be particularly beneficial if you have several new people joining your team. For instance, one fun team-building event might be to organize an escape room activity. This will give your team the opportunity to build on their relationships in a fun environment. However, team-building activities do not have to mean a dedicated event; you could start each day with a short activity designed to increase your colleagues’ collaborative skills, such as a board game. Even a chat over your mid-morning coffee is a great way to build interpersonal relationships with your team.
Delegating work involves assigning tasks and controlling the workloads of your colleagues. As such, it can become a source of dissatisfaction and disagreement amongst your team. For example, there might be one person who seems to always be landed with tasks that are not a part of their job description, while others sail by doing the bare minimum. As a manager, it is up to you to monitor workloads and assign tasks in such a way as to make good use of each person’s skill set while not overburdening them.
It is particularly important when delegating tasks not to constantly monitor your colleague’s progress. While you might be concerned about making sure that it is carried correctly and to a high standard, particularly if you are a perfectionist, this could come across as micromanaging your team. Micromanagement involves a manager closely observing and controlling the work of their subordinates, and it can cause a huge amount of dissatisfaction in a team. So when delegating tasks, take a step back and allow your colleagues to do their jobs – there is a reason after all why they have been chosen to work in your team.
In conclusion, an inspiring and effective manager is able to keep their connection to their subordinates while also providing firm and clear guidance. If you feel that you are lacking in managerial qualities, further education will enable you to grow and develop so that you become the best manager that you can be.