Updated: Sep 20
You know that no one likes to be micro-managed. You didn’t either when you first joined the team.
You know that asking your team members questions that are open-ended and help them find the solution is much better than telling them exactly what to do.
You are also aware enough to know that when you ask a question like, “I am just curious, what the heck were you thinking?”, the question is neither open nor curious, and will probably not get lead to the self-correction you are looking for from your team member.
You know all these things because you were an employee, and only recently, you became the manager.
It feels like just a minute ago when you were on the front lines — as a sales rep or developer and busy hitting your numbers or working your magic. Your success in the job caught the eye of management, and suddenly you are managing a team of 10.
The problem is, you are trained in sales or programming, not management. And you feel unprepared for the role.
HR is helping you and even putting together training opportunities to help you improve your skills.
While you might know the right thing to do, your cognitive processes seem a long way from the habits of your heart and the work of your hands to know how to become a manager.
It’s just too easy to get caught in the ego boost from your new title, or feelings of imposter syndrome, thinking that you aren’t the most qualified for the job. Sound familiar?
The main shift in mindset is moving away from managing projects and moving toward managing the people doing those projects. Because people are a lot more unpredictable, one of the main skills you want to hone is how you communicate.
Even for those of us who might think we are great communicators, there is always a thing or two we can learn. As George Bernard Shaw once said, “The single biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” Getting clear on the request, quieting our minds enough to listen, asking the right kinds of questions that can invite a robust response, and checking for understanding are all a part of the complex activity called communication.
In that process, there are three specific skills, that like muscles, always need to be strengthened.
Read the full article on Medium.com here.