Learn 4 Important Tips for Becoming a Manager for the First Time

Congratulations! All your hard work has paid off, and you’ve been promoted to a management position. It’s a huge feather in your cap. But in the short term, it’s likely to be one of the most challenging transitions you’ll ever make, because you’re about to become your coworkers’ – many of whom may also be your good friends – boss.


You’ve worked all these years to build great relationships– and now you’re faced with having to lay down the law and enforce the roles. Sure, you knew that’s what you signed up for. But all of a sudden, reality hits. Ease the transition for yourself and others with these four tips:

  1. Talk to your team.

Once your promotion has been announced, call your team together to set expectations and talk about plans going forward. Let them know that while you understand their work and the challenges they face, you’re now responsible for managing performance, evaluations and overall direction.

  • Emphasize the trust you’ve already built within the team. Ask for their support and confidence, and reassure them that it’s a two-way street.
  • Clarify expectations. Spend time making sure goals are clear, and everyone knows what’s expected of them. Let employees know that your role is to serve them and help them succeed.
  1. Change your mindset – and behavior – from peer to manager.

Like it or not, you can’t be part of the team in the same way you used to be. Recognize that there’s a fine line – at least while you’re on the clock – between being warm and friendly to your employees and being their buddy. Don’t confuse yourself or others about what your role really is.

  • Set boundaries. Avoid gossip and water cooler speculation. Remain approachable, but let your behavior show that you’re a manager.
  1. Determine how you’ll manage resistance.

Get ready for some pushback from your peers – because it will happen. Some people may purposely test you or call you out every time you make even the smallest mistake.

  • Focus on integrity. Concentrate on learning the basics of your new role while continuing to build relationships and keeping your commitments. Your position may have changed, but reinforce the fact that you still have your team’s best interest at heart.
  • Recognize others. Catching people doing something well should be a primary focus of your leadership – and it will help people feel good about themselves. As a result, they’ll perform better, and you’ll score some early wins in your new role.
  1. Find a confidante.

Mentors can be valuable at many points during your career, but possibly never more so than as you transition into a managerial role. Just keep in mind that at this point, that mentor shouldn’t be your own boss. It should be someone who can offer unbiased, objective feedback, and active listening.

  • Find someone you respect, with a track record of success as a leader. Turn to them for insight and advice. There’s nothing quite as valuable as wisdom from those who have walked the path before you.

As you grow in your career – whether it’s finding your next opportunity or transitioning into new responsibilities at your current company – you can turn to the talent experts at PrideStaff Fresno to help ensure your success. Read our related posts or contact us today to learn more.


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