Management Training for new managers is often viewed as a ‘nice to have’ than a ‘must have’ in many organisations. The age old (fundamentally flawed) approach to supporting new managers of ‘They’ll be fine’ or ‘They’ll either sink or swim’ continues to exist in too many organisations, both private and public sector. Occasionally, management training for new managers only makes an appearance when the ‘new’ manager has been in post for several months, and is not performing as their line manager would like.
Management Training for new managers, when it does happen, is often too heavily focused on transactional and process driven activities, with the vitally important people management tools, techniques and skills being either dropped down the priority list or even sidelined completely. But why? And what potential damage is this approach causing to your organisation?
Three Things You Should Know About New Managers
Bearing in mind that most managers are promoted to a management post not because they have demonstrated any desire, willingness or ability to effectively manage individuals to achieve organisational and department goals, but because they excelled in a completely unrelated role, this is where the problem begins to manifest. There’s some things you really should know about new managers.
- New Managers may be eager to impress and please their line manager early in their new role. But impressing and pleasing can come with a cost of saying ‘Yes’ to every request and instruction that comes their way. The operational risk? The new manager’s desire to impress and be loyal damages their ability to deliver genuine value as lots of bits of things get done rather than the few things that really matter and add value.
- Many won’t ask for help, even when they really need it. Asking a line manager or peer for help, guidance or input can feel like a failure. Why? Well, the ‘I’m the Manager so I should know the answer‘ belief plays an important role here. If you are managing or mentoring a new in post manager, help him or her understand that they would be doing you, and your organisation, a disservice by not asking for help, and asking for it early when they are struggling.
- Few New Managers Possess Healthy Emotional Intelligence Levels. So why can this be an issue? Simply as a crucial role of a Manager is to develop high trust, low maintenance, collaborative relationships with team members, peers and stakeholders so that the important things get done, and get done well and on time too. Unwittingly, a new manager (and established managers too), tend to manage team members from an auto-pilot, default setting which can lack any level of flexibility or understanding of individual team member’s needs.
How To Maximise The Success of New Managers
New managers can, if supported effectively, and if personally committed to adding value, can develop rather quickly, and without regularly taking time away from their work environment to participate in management training courses. The trick is to accurately identify and appoint those individuals who have demonstrated an ability, desire and willingness to be a manager – not just in job title and financial benefits, but in action. A probationary trial period is always beneficial as, as long as genuine and credible support is provided for the new manager, the likelihood of success is maximised. It is important that alongside focusing on what your organisation requires from the new manager, the support provided is focused, relevant, flexible and, as much focused on how the new manager prefers to learn rather than how the mentor or coach prefers to teach.
Emotional Intelligence for New Managers
Emotional Intelligence training which is bespoke rather than off the dusty shelf can add demonstrable value for new managers, as well as for their teams, and your organisation too. Simply learning ‘Emotional Intelligence’ will add little if any value, but designing a bespoke management training course or programme around organisational priorities as well as individual managers’ priorities is where the often hidden value can be uncovered, and quickly too.
If you would like to chat through how your new managers and established managers can optimise their effectiveness, you’re welcome to get in touch.