Taking on the position of “manager” for the first time can be a very exciting experience – but it’s also pretty overwhelming too. As a manager, you’re responsible for leading an entire group of people, and this means that you have the power to make real changes in your business. Of course, you also need to figure out how to help your company evolve successfully if you want to reduce your risk of unwanted problems. The truth is that most managers will encounter at least a few mistakes on the road to success. After all, the transition to management isn’t just about getting a pay rise – it’s a complete shift in mindset. Here are just a few of the common issues managers face, so you can try to avoid them for yourself.
Trying to Do Everything Yourself
As an average employee, you were focused on trying to get tasks done according to a strict schedule. The same sort of thing will be expected of you in a managerial position – however the weight on your shoulders is likely to be greater than ever. The good news is that you’ll have employees to delegate tasks to. Don’t forget to ask for help – you can’t do everything yourself.
Forgetting to Focus on Goals
When huge projects start coming your way, it can be tempting to take a responsive approach to tasks. This simply means that you try to get things done as soon as they arrive on your desk. However, as things pile up, you’re going to need to start prioritizing. Having business goals in mind will help you to do this more effectively, as will a good knowledge of deadlines and expectations.
It’s tempting to look at other managers for guidance when you’re getting started in a new position. While there’s nothing wrong with searching for inspiration, it’s important to remember that you should be looking for an opportunity to develop your own unique management style wherever you can. Test yourself, and make your own decisions, rather than just asking yourself what someone else would do in your shoes.
Making False Promises
As a manager, you’re going to be tempted to try and please everyone at once. Unfortunately, this isn’t always possible – particularly when the wants of your employees and the needs of your employers can be two very different things. The important thing to remember here is that you shouldn’t make promises you can’t keep. If you’re not sure whether you can accomplish something, simply say that.
Failing to Make Decisions
Finally, when you don’t have any prior management experience to fall back on, it can be common for new managers to experience something known as “decision paralysis”. This is when you spend so much time over-thinking a choice you have to make that the problem eventually rectifies itself, or a decision is made for you. As a manager, it’s crucial for you to have confidence in your abilities and make the tough choices at times.
Ronn Torossian is the Founder and CEO of the New York based public relations firm 5WPR: one of the 20 largest PR Firms in the United States