3 Key Leadership Development tips for New Managers

Congratulations! You’ve been promoted!

Things are different now, aren’t they? If you are like most newly promoted managers I’ve ever talked with, you’re in a state of shock from all the things that are different. That’s okay. You’ll adjust. Here are 3 tips to help you cope.

1. Leverage yourself. Especially, leverage your time, your energy, and your talent. Realize that your job is no longer to do the work; it is to lead others who do the work. Chances are, you were really, really good at what you did before you were promoted. In fact, that’s partly why you were promoted. You may be tempted, therefore, to “help” your people by doing their work the way you know how to do it so well. Don’t go there. It’s no longer your job to do the work, employee development is. It doesn’t matter if those for whom you are now responsible are not as competent as you were. Don’t do their work for them. You’ll never leverage yourself that way. Here’s what I mean.

Let’s say you now have 10 direct reports. By your estimate, they are on average only half as good as you were when you did that job. Ten people, each at half of your competence, can still produce 5 times as much output as you could do alone. If you did the work of one of them, the group’s productivity would increase to 5.5 times what you could do alone. But, that’s where your employee productivity gains stop. if you will concentrate instead on leadership, motivating them, teaching them, directing them, there is where you’ll find leverage. In a short while, let’s suppose that each employee on your team can now, on average, perform the work 80% as well as you could when you did that job. Well, now you’ve increased your effectiveness 8 times. You’ve gone from 5x to 8x. That’s what I mean by leverage.

2. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel. Learn from others who have gone before you. Leadership is a much studied science and art. Last time I looked, there were over 112,000 books on leadership available through Amazon.com alone! Unfortunately, many of those are not backed with tools and techniques to implement what they reveal. This frustration was why the Beyond Morale Online Employee Engagement System was created. The program has been developed over 30 years of science, leadership training and coaching. Others have experienced a fast track to effective leadership using the program.

3. Ask for help. You don’t have to be a know-it-all. In fact, know-it-alls are the type of new managers who are most likely to fall into the temptation of #1 above. You can ask for help in 3 “directions” so to speak—up, down, and sideways.

  • Ask your team. Sure, you know what the job is like; you were just recently doing it. But, be honest with yourself, aren’t there a lot of ideas you kept to yourself simply because not one “above” you cared enough to ask? You can be different.
  • Ask your peers. Spend time with others who hold the sort of leadership position you now have. They’ve faced many of the same pressures, challenges, and perplexities that you now face.
  • Ask your boss. Your boss’s job is to help you succeed. Your boss’s goal is to gain leverage, too.

Keeping these 3 simple tips in mind will go a long way to making your transition to manager an easier and more enjoyable one than you can imagine. Leverage yourself. Don’t reinvent the wheel. And ask for help. Good luck!

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