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Hi Forum,
Just curious on what you would tell a new to role manager on What's the ONE thing you wish you'd known before becoming a manager?

Thank you,
Jose

Douglas Brill's picture

Dont change jobs to become a manager. I have learned this the hard way. I wish I had known about these podcasts then. It may have stopped me from changing jobs.

mrreliable's picture

Great question.

The one thing I wish I'd have known is that most companies (in my experience) do a terrible job of training managers, if they do any management training at all. Managers have to find their own education and training. That's one reason this website is so valuable.

I've been "promoted" to manager half a dozen times through my work life in retail sales, retail fulfillment, and then a fairly long run in publishing. Most of the appointments to the manager role was, "Congratulations. Here's a pay bump. Now you're a manager. Good luck."

Although there was accountability, there wasn't a single time where anyone sat me down and explained expectations, authority, or anything about my new role. I was thrown into molten lava and told to swim for it.

Over a 30-year work life that includes several management roles, my management education came from the following sources, in order of importance.

1) Stepping forward (because everyone else took a step back) to coach 10 & Under girls fastpitch softball. Looking back I am amazed at how similar it is teaching kids the fundamentals of hitting, fielding, and base running when compared to teaching professionals how to be successful as individuals and as a team. To this day I use fastpitch analogies when working with professionals (If you never get thrown out trying to steal a base, you're not being aggressive enough, and other platitudes).

2) Manager Tools. I would have this as Number One if I would have discovered it sooner.

3) Discussions with people who have more experience in management than I do.

4) Management seminars. Just as with anything, if you don't pursue education and training, you're going to backslide.

Again, this is just my experience, but I would put management training by the companies that have promoted me to management as just about zero.

Aprilfrench's picture

I'm not sure if this is something I was capable of understanding before I became a manager, but I wish I would have learned earlier that the only person you can change is yourself.  That would have saved me a lot of headaches!

kimball's picture

I knew to wait three months (thanks to MT) before making any major changes, but I couldn't help my eager self. I hadn't earned the team's trust yet, and I was too aggressive. I lost a solid performer, because I introduced changes too fast. I would stick with introducing the O3's and staff meeting (if they don't already exist), but a lot can wait.

gehrhorn's picture

Being "right" isn't enough. Sometimes you have to be persuasive.