Many workers, at some point in their career, will have to decide whether they’re ready for a managerial role. Career progression is something that most candidates and employees strive for, but in many cases, people consider the perks of a leadership position, such as a pay bump, extra benefits and a more prestigious job title, and completely overlook the impact that becoming a manager will have on their working lives.
Moving into a managerial role is not just a big responsibility, it also means moving away from working on the frontline and potentially doing something you love. The skills and strengths required to be a good manager are likely to be very different from the skills that led to your promotion in the first place. The promotion could even reveal weaknesses in your skillset and leave you feeling unprepared and exposed.
Before jumping at the opportunity for promotion or applying for a managerial role elsewhere, here are a few questions we think you’d be wise to consider.
How will your responsibilities change?
It’s essential you understand the impact that a managerial role will have on your day-to-day responsibilities and whether it will translate to longer working hours and more stress. As an example, when a teacher becomes a head of department, they tend to spend less time in the classroom and more time in meetings or completing administrative tasks. If interacting with the children is something you love, it might not be the role for you.
Do you have the skills to be an effective leader?
Moving into a managerial position and feeling comfortable in the new role will take time. That’s why training is so important. On-the-job and external training should go hand in hand with a move up the ladder to a new role. It helps if you have some idea of the skills you’ll need for the new position that you feel you lack.
This takes self-awareness that not everyone possesses, but it’s important to be as honest with yourself as you can. An effective strategy is to think of a manager in your organisation you admire and consider the skills they have that you need to work on. You can then take the initiative to either ask for training or work to develop the new skills yourself.
Can you see the bigger picture?
As a frontline employee, it’s important you understand what the main objectives of the organisation are, but you don’t have to know all the steps it’s going to take to get there. As a manager, you have to be more aware of the bigger picture and help others share that vision too.
Those who understand the bigger picture are able to see the connections between what others might see as disparate parts of the business. They are able to consider overall policies and strategies and do not become side-tracked by irrelevant detail. They also tend to be excellent multitaskers.
What type of leader will you be?
Your leadership style will have a huge impact on the productivity, job satisfaction and morale of your team. An employee retention report from TINYpulse found that employees with ineffective managers are four times more likely to be actively looking for new jobs. You can gain some light on the type of leader you might be by answering the following questions:
- How do you interact with others? Do you prefer to communicate with people individually or as a group?
- What personality types have you struggled to work with in the past?
- How much information do you need about a task? Do you like to be in complete control or do you only need an update when there is a problem?
- How do you show your appreciation to others?
- What experiences have you found difficult in your career?
Once you’ve answered those questions, re-examine your responses through the eyes of a leader and think about how the way you communicate, manage tasks and show your appreciation will impact on others. Then consider what changes you could make to become a better leader.
Are you ready for a managerial role?