1Call Direct Ask: Are You Ready For Management?
Glasgow, UK, August 2013 - Some people are natural managers. They love to lead, drive performance and contribute to the broader goals of a company. Yet management isn’t for everyone. It requires a unique set of skills to get the best performance out of employees and to juggle a number of tasks all at once. Managers also put in longer hours and are held to a higher standard of accountability.
Some workers simply evolve into managers over the course of their careers. Others are bored with their current position and see management as a way to tackle new challenges.
So, if you’re thinking management is for you, here are some questions you should ask yourself first:
Can you motivate a team?
There’s more to leadership than helping your team hit the minimum requirements. Your job is now to motivate your team to go above and beyond, to complete their tasks with enthusiasm, and to help their co-workers achieve their goals. This can be difficult, especially when you don’t have the resources to provide incentives like bonuses and raises. You have to think creatively to find out what else will motivate the team.
Do you have excellent communication skills?
As your team’s motivator, coach, and disciplinarian, it’s up to you to clearly communicate with your team. To achieve real success, you’ll need to be able to convey what needs to be done and how it can be accomplished without micromanaging. You’ll also need to provide thorough feedback and ample recognition for a job well done. From beginning to end, everything centers around clear, constant communication with you as the facilitator.
Are you willing to take the blame?
It’s daunting to be held accountable for an entire team. As the leader, if any one messes up, you’re going to hear about it and be expected to remedy the situation. The solution won’t be to simply repeat the criticism to the offending party because the responsibility partially falls on you. Perhaps you didn’t provide sufficient training, ignored a performance issue, or simply weren’t paying enough attention, you have to be able to look at the way you manage with a critical eye and figure out how you can improve too.
Are you a great example?
All eyes will be on you and that brings more pressure than you might think. Every time you arrive late, leave early, take shortcuts, miss deadlines, or gossip about co-workers, your team will notice and take it as a sign that it’s fine when they do those things too. You have to be ready to set the best example you can.
Are you able to make difficult decisions?
As a team member you lean on your manager to help you make decisions and determine the best way to proceed in tough situations. Once a manager yourself you are in charge of customer service issues, product issues and you will have to make tough calls regarding your own team members. What happens when someone starts to continually underperform?
To make those calls, you’ll have to be able to think through a lot of information to decide what’s going to be best for your team and the company.
Are you personable?
As a leader you will encounter some unexpected situations. Your team will come to you for everything from sicknesses and divorces to pregnancies and marriages and even though these things may not seem job-related, whatever affects their lives is ultimately going to affect how they do their jobs and how you do yours. You have to be prepared to appropriately respond on a personal level—and then figure out how to make it work within the scope of the rest of the team.
Can you celebrate others’ success?
Yes, management is challenging, that is clear but it’s also incredibly rewarding, in a different way than you might be used to. When you’re a manager, your team’s successes become your successes. When your team hits a goal, you feel a swelling sense of pride that it was, in part, due to your leadership. The spotlight may not shine directly on you, but it feels better than when it does.
You don’t have to be 100% sure of yourself in all of these areas to be promoted into that management role, because no matter what, you’re going to learn a lot along the way. As long as you know what to expect and have the right attitude toward your role, you’ll be off to a great start.
For additional information, contact a member of the 1Call Direct administration team at firstname.lastname@example.org
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