New manager mistakes are avoidable if you dedicate sufficient time to understand your new role regardless of whether you have just been promoted to a new position or just arrived an organisation as a new manager.
Being a new manager makes you the new kid on the block and you need to be aware of several new manager mistakes in order to become successful and grow your career in management. So, whether you already occupy a managerial position or new to the role, here are some common new manager mistakes you should avoid.
Nothing makes a new manager lose his/her team’s respect faster than wanting to show off your position and authority at your new rule. Leadership is about developing people’s capabilities beyond what they can see and constantly inspiring them to do better.
A great leader does not thrive on showing off his/her power for showing off sake. They are respected but not out of fear of sanctions or possible sack. Respect others and you will also be respected. Do not demand it or try to prove you are the boss because in all honesty, you already are and there is no need to prove this or be condescending to people you lead.
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A team is a collaborative enterprise and micromanagement kills collaboration, initiative and innovative spirit. Everything you fear that can go wrong will go wrong while micromanaging people. Whether out of fear or not, micromanagement is a bad strategy for your team.
A micromanaging work environment hampers employee growth, personal development and increases churn rate. When your team members don’t grow in terms of skills, capacity and productivity over a period of time, it means you need to optimise your team’s performance to achieve better results.
You do not want to be stuck in little detail of every task or job your team needs to get done. This is a non-productive process. Avoid being a micromanaging new manger because, according to John Rosemond, “invariably, micromanaging results in four problems: deceit, disloyalty, conflict, and communication problems.”
Most new managers tend to change everything to suit themselves rather than optimising strategies that have been tested and proven to yield positive results. Changing everything seems like a smart move; especially when you just arrive at a new organisation but in most cases, this can lead to your downfall as the people and the work culture might be different from yours.
Get to understand your new team members and communicate with them to have a better view of the true situation of things. You should be willing to run tests to optimise things that work and discard strategies that don’t yield good results.
By default, a good shepherd is expected to be protective of his/her flock always because any harm that comes to them leaves a sour stain on the shepherd’s credibility. In a bid to protect their credibility and reputation, most new managers tilt towards putting their team members in the line of fire in a bid to avoid taking the fall for mistakes made. This is a bad move and will always come back to haunt you. Nothing takes away your credibility as a new manager as allowing your team members to be on the fry. This would make them lose trust in the workplace and will also jeopardise your ability to get them to commit fully to what you are building.
One epic mistake made by most new managers is to pick a favourite employee or team member at face-value. Some new managers use this as a divide-and-rule strategy but it could further dig your pit of not succeeding at your new role.
You want all hands on deck and being able to inspire everyone. Compliment top performers without making them favourites. You should recognise and appreciate their efforts but don’t just listen, you also need to watch them and offer constructive criticism. Your ability to observe the team without them noticing will help you identify their true level of productivity.
New managers fear the unknown in most cases. Changing everything or being the bad guy in the room can be tough but don’t expect everyone to like you. Rather, they will grow to respect you if your decisions are always backed up by data and not just personal views. Where there is a conflict, put everything to a test before fully adopting it. There will be decisions made out of gut feeling; when such decisions fail, show leadership by taking responsibility and when they succeed, don’t take all the credit. As a new manager do not be afraid to make changes because not doing the necessary things will inevitably lead to failure.
Final Thoughts on New Manager Mistakes
While you don’t have to know everything as a new manager, you must be able to provide the kind of leadership to inspire optimal and better results from your team and organisation. This is a total win for you and everyone. Have you made new manager mistakes or suddenly realised some mistakes you made in the past? Drop a comment below to let us know.