Some say that leaders are born, not made. While many leaders have inherent skills that can be used in management, everyone has strengths and weaknesses that will need to be considered when first entering the field. For those who are new to leadership, there are ways to gain insight and develop skillsets that rival those of more experienced managers. Research and gaining knowledge from other successful managers is vital. When beginning that process, consider these tips to get started.
Have a Support System
Professionals in every industry benefit from a strong relationship with a mentor when they are taking on new roles. If you are new to management, consider looking for a mentor that can provide support and act as a role model. If you see a manager in the workplace that works well with their team and keeps them motivated, ask them for advice. Not only will you appreciate the help, the person you seek out will appreciate that you notice just what they do.
Understand Your Workforce
In the past, it was very common for older generations to manage younger generations. Now with more professionals from Generation X and Y moving up in the workplace, there can be a reversal of this traditional role and younger generations may be supervising baby boomers who have been with the corporation for years. If you are young, understand that older staff members may be upset or bitter that they are subordinate to someone half their age. Be prepared for this challenge. Learn to respect everyone, and do your best to bridge the gap. Learn how to effectively communicate with other generations, understand their learning style, and most importantly give clear and concise direction.
Take Time to Network
You are going to be very busy adapting to your new position and learning new roles. Despite the new demands on your schedule, you should take time to network and meet people in key departments and with other businesses you or your department will interact with. Not only does this increase the personal connect and trust level with key members of your industry, it also educates you regarding vital information to ensure that your department operates more effectively with internal and external customers.
Being a new manager is never easy. If you think it is going to be an easy transition or an easy position, you have to consider just how challenging being the leader can be. You have to answer to executives, find a way to produce and find a way to keep your team satisfied and motivated. Consider these tips and continue to research and learn from the successes and failures of others to be the most effective manager possible.