Being promoted as a manager means a better compensation package, but it is not an easy job. You need to think not just of yourself but of the entire team under your supervision. You will also have the chance to help your colleagues achieve their goals and perform better.
Many would think that if you become a manager, you will be in a better place. If you need something to be done, you can easily delegate the work to your staff. But, this is not the case all the time. As a leader, you need to motivate them to come to work every day.
First-time bosses encounter a lot of issues that they need to address right away. It is tough being on top, so you need to think, move, and find the solutions fast.
Problem #1 – Getting Along With Your Team
When you start handling a new team, it will take some time to get to know each member. The common mistake of many managers is that they fail to get along with their team. They did not take some time to understand the individual strengths and weaknesses of their employees. You have to keep in mind that the more you get to know each member of your team, the better you can lead them and direct them on the right path.
According to Gallup’s report, around 50% of employees quit their jobs because of their managers.
If you do not want to be part of the stats, you have to find solutions to work with your team harmoniously.
- Set-up 1-1 Meeting With Your Team Members
If your team has less than twenty members, setting up a one on one meeting can help you know them better. It will only take an hour or two to talk with them and discuss everything that might affect the team’s output.
During the meeting, treat them not just workers but as people. It is much easier to work with them if you know them better personally. You can talk about their dreams and aspirations as professionals, their struggles that can affect their work, and how you can help them push themselves. They can also share their ideas and expectation with you as their new boss.
With our present situation, you can’t talk to them face to face. You can send an email, call them on the phone, text them, much better if you can do Zoom meetings or any platform to talk comfortably with them.
- Become Their Mentor
One of the best ways to get to know your team members better is to manage them like mentors. Becoming their mentor will enable you to have a different relationship with them. They will not look at you as a boss, but a leader who is concerned about their career, and they will appreciate your support. With your guidance, they are inspired to do better and share helpful ideas, not just with you but with the entire team. With you as their mentor, they will feel motivated and work hard to reach their goals.
- Eat Out with Them
Having lunch with the team and listening to what is on their minds most casually is another effective way to get to know them better. Doing this makes work a little less stressful. They can open up to you without hesitations but with respect. Putting a barrier between your employees is not a good idea.
- Give them a Chance to Engage More
Tell them your expectations and provide them with the right tools and support. A highly engaged team has a 21% probability of becoming more profitable compared to other teams that are being manipulated only by the bosses. Since they are more engaged in the project, this will give them enough reasons to work every day.
Around 71% of managers say that employee engagement is critical to every company’s success.
Problem #2 – Neglecting Yours’s and Your Team’s Well-Being
First time boss may tend to neglect not just the team’s well-being but his wellness as well. It is usual for you to feel on the spot and to work too much. Most new managers are hesitant to ask for their team’s help as they think that senior management would believe they have picked the wrong person for the managerial position.
Doing all the work and stressing yourself out is not a good idea. Instead of getting productive, you will become sick, restless, and tired. This can significantly affect the productivity of the team.
- Set-Up a Well-Being Program for your Employees
Many companies associate employee’s well-being with physical health only. The truth is there is much more than that. It should cover not just physical health but also mental and social well-being.
Regarding physical health, it is apparent that employee’s health is at risk with the COVID-19 spreading fast. Therefore, companies should implement new programs and communication platforms to keep their employees protected against the virus. Due to quarantine, lots of people were having a hard time maintaining their healthy life habits.
With the increase in fear, stress, and uncertainty in the working area because of the pandemic, mental health is greatly affected. And because of social distancing, there is a significant impact on an employee’s social well-being. Setting up a well-being program for your employees can improve their wellness and makes them more productive.
- Divide Work Equally into your Team
The effective way for a team to handle big projects is to work together. After knowing your employees’ strengths and weaknesses, you will have an idea now of how to delegate the work. By doing this, your team will become more productive with less stress. One of the reasons they put you in that position is because they believe you can handle people well. So show them that they are not wrong in putting you on that level.
- Engage on a Regular Workout
As a leader, you need to set a good example for your teammates. You also need to engage yourself in a regular workout. You can find some helpful and effective exercises online. Workouts can be done at home, as physical activities are prohibited due to pandemic. You can join your team in their workouts to encourage them to engage in their well-being programs.
Problem #3 – Managing Time
First-time bosses may tend to work overtime, affecting their professional life and personal life. After taking the new role, you might have some scheduling issues, mainly if you are doing tasks you are supposed to delegate. Since you are the boss now, you are responsible for managing your time and the time of your team. But you have to remember – your team should always be your priority.
It’s up to you to prioritize tasks, projects, and initiatives for your team according to the business goals. But, you also need to have time to develop your role. It may include working with a coach, talking to other leaders regarding practical approaches and techniques on handling a team, and reading about management.
- Set Clear Expectations and Reasonable Timelines
According to a study, most of the time, employees are facing management problems due to poor leadership. Managers should determine which work to prioritize, and they have to make it clear with their employees. Make sure that you divide the work equally so you will not overwhelm other team members. You must set a clear timeline to avoid procrastination.
Most of the issues associated with time management are communication problems. An incompetent boss would assign tasks without indicating which should be prioritized, and no clear timeline was set. As a result, the team members don’t know what task to do first and how they will spend their time.
As a boss, you can ask them once in a while if they need help or need anything. Making them feel that you are always there can boost their confidence and self-esteem. Tell them your expectations and make sure it is reasonable.
- Guide Your Team on Planning and Estimating Their Time Effectively
The more you think you can finish a task, the longer it takes you to complete it. Psychologists refer to this as planning fallacy – when planning on how long a task or project to complete and then assuming the result will follow your plans, even if you know better.
As a new boss, you might not be able to experience this yet, but it is much worse for your team members who are more pressured not to fail. A time audit may help your team comprehend what will get in their way during the workday. But you also need to help them spend their time wisely.
You can start by being more active in the planning stage and break the bigger projects into smaller parts or deliverables. As their boss, you have insight into some things they don’t. Are they realistic on the timeline set for a specific milestone? Can they be responsible for this timeline? Have they determined what they will need from other departments? How long will it take to gather the resources?
Yes, this is quite a big commitment for you. But you are investing in someone who can manage the time accurately and efficiently as you move forward.
- Learn to Delegate, Outsource, and Be Resourceful
You can’t do everything by yourself. It would be best if you learn to delegate and outsource. It is best to train someone to carry out a specific task in your work. This will lessen your burden, and you can focus on the bigger tasks or a more complicated task. If the job requires some expertise that your team is not skilled enough to do, you can outsource to save time and money.
It would help if you focused on your task. As a boss, there are things that only you can complete. Make sure you do them from start to finish. Avoid doing half work and abandoning your present task and do something else. It is not only bad time management but also can affect your concentration. You will lose your momentum. Concentrate on the task you are working on, and avoid these pitfalls.
If you think the time frame you have is not possible, you can make some changes. Sometimes you feel energized at a specific time of the day. You can schedule the most challenging task during that time. It is okay to make some changes in your schedule as long as it will not significantly affect the project.
In Summary –
Believe it or not, being promoted as a new manager is not about glory. That is the biggest mistake most people think if someone gets promoted to manager. You need to understand that if you become the boss or manager, it is like coaching a basketball team.
You will be leading a team to win the game. And how will you do this? By guiding the team and coaching them well. It is the same when you become a boss, and you have to manage a number of employees. You need to guide, lead, direct, support, and communicate with your team members.
It is best to seek guidance from your mentor and not stop learning and improving yourself. Read books and do some research on how you can improve yourself now that you are a boss.
Ask your team members for opinions and ideas. You can learn a lot from them. Communication is an essential factor in a harmonious working relationship. Share your knowledge with your employees. Your employee’s success is also your success. Remember, you were promoted because the company heads believe you got the knowledge, skills, and ability to lead a team effectively. Do not disappoint them. You have been working hard to achieve your position now, do not let it slip away from you because of incompetence. Be the boss that everybody would love to have.
So yeah, thats pretty much from my end. Let me know your thoughts/discomforts in the comment below or you can reach out to me over email as well.
Thanks for reading.