Three Secrets of Success for New Managers


No. We’re not going to tell you all the new leadership skills you must learn as you transition from individual contributor to new manager. We hope you’ll be able to participate in a high quality new manager training program that will introduce you to what will be expected of you in your new role. The purpose of this article is to share a few secrets that are rarely discussed in standard classroom training…the counterintuitive tips we have learned in our two decades of work with both new and experienced managers.

We know that it’s overwhelming at first…so much to learn and so little time. You are eager to succeed and prove that you are fully capable and that your boss was right to give you this chance to advance your career. But here’s where we weigh in with our tips…

1. Keep a healthy balance.
It’s tempting to work extra hard immediately and, in so doing, neglect what really matters to keep you on track…smart prioritization and a healthy work-life balance. Make sure that you keep your eye on the ball and maintain your overall well-being with good health habits and good time with family and friends. Keep up with your exercise regime and see that you get adequate sleep. Follow a healthy diet that gives you the nutrition you need for energy and focus. Take time to feed your heart and soul…whether it is with family or friends or your favorite leisure activity. If you tip the balance too far on the side of work, you will be overtired, stressed and unable to focus on supporting your team and their needs.

2. Learn to rely on others.
You most likely achieved your promotion through your own high performance. Now instead of relying on your own work, you need to rely on the work of your team. This can be a difficult but a necessary shift. Sort out what others can do and delegate accordingly. You cannot hoard tasks but need to spread them out among your team members. This will give you the time you need to get the higher level management and strategic work done.

3. Figure out what you can no longer do.
It’s simply a matter of having only 24 hours in a day. You have to let go of how you used to spend your time and prioritize how you will spend it now. To really do your new job well, you need to develop your team. Give them opportunities to learn and grow by directing new projects their way and allowing them ownership. Think about how an assistant can reduce your work load or how you can reassign responsibility. Just be really clear about who will do what and when.

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