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7 Lead-Off Mistakes to Avoid as a First-Time Manager

Would-be good managers try to stay positive leaders for their teams. So why do they still lead their teams astray, and the projects ultimately fail? In a post for PM Hut, Art Petty elaborates on common mistakes that first-time managers tend to make, so that you can ensure you do not follow in their footsteps.

Mistakes Made the First Time Around

  1. “Things are going to change around here.”
  2. “I’m the new sheriff in town.”
  3. “Nothing’s going to change.”
  4. Begin with restructuring.
  5. Only listening to the loud people
  6. Exuding too much independence
  7. Trying to be everyone’s friend

It happens all the time–a manager will address their team by beginning with: “Things are going to change around here.” This occurs because managers enter this new role assuming they were given this position because there is a problem they must fix. There needs to be some level of respect shown to the work of predecessors; not everything needs to be overhauled. On the flip side, also do not lie and be the pessimist that asserts: “Nothing’s going to change.” The bottom line is things will inevitably change. It is the manager’s job to actively make improvements over time.

Too often new managers are feeling insecure about their own capabilities and they attempt to overcompensate by playing the “I’m the new sheriff in town” card. This immediately destroys any credibility they had and makes it difficult to move forward. When taking over a new project, no decision should be made quickly. Take the time to adequately assess the skills of the team and the areas that may need improvement. Additionally, do not be afraid to ask for the team’s help and input. Just because a person is not heard or does not actively voice their opinions does not mean they lack good ideas. Some of the best, most innovative ideas to help transform the project can be found in the quiet ones.

Do not make the mistake of a manager who takes the time to assess everything by intensely studying but not involving the team in any sort of way. The manager is managing people, so involve them! And finally, especially when a manager has been promoted from within the team, they often want to maintain their friendships with the team. But they are now a manager and cannot allow for these relationships to cloud judgment. A manager must be impartial and thinking clearly.

You can read the original post here: http://www.pmhut.com/7-lead-off-mistakes-to-avoid-as-a-first-time-manager

About Danielle Koehler

Profile photo of Danielle Koehler
Danielle is a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success. She has degrees in English and human resource management from Shippensburg University.

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