Coaching for a new manager?

Finding a balance with your team

In my work as an executive coach, one of the most frequent subjects of discussion are how to adapt when you are promoted from one of a team to manage the team.

The dynamic changes.  You feel more like a parent than a child and it’s a challenge on many levels.

How do you assert your authority?

How do you engage the team?

How do you manage resentment if there are team members who wanted your job?

Can you remain popular now that your are their ‘boss’?

The questions go on.

Be careful with assumptions

Often we imagine people’s reaction without truly knowing the truth.  We may assume that others won’t feel comfortable with the change in status – they may resent our more senior role. “They are probably going to gang up on me and try and sabotage my decisions. They are unlikely to cooperate with me and start looking for work elsewhere.” They won’t see me as a friend anymore.

Assumptions get us nowhere

When we make these sort of assumptions, it’s important to stop, step back and ask yourself

“Really? Based on what evidence?”

So often we imagine what people are thinking without the back up of evidence. In fact, we base many decisions in life and in work on what we believe others with think. An often this belief is based on little or no reality. Imagine that, making a decision that is based on something with imagine to be true with actually finding out if it is. We all do it!

So what can be done about this? A good first step is to work on clear communication.  Honesty goes a long way and your new team will feel better knowing you have no agenda and are not hiding anything.

Perspective is essential.

Take a step back and ask yourself what’s really going on.  Assumptions about others’ reactions are rarely useful, or correct. Put aside the assumptions and decide based on what you really know. Or even better have an honest conversation. It’s likely that others involved are making assumptions about what you’re doing or thinking too.

Trust yourself

Trust yourself – you have been promoted because you are capable of doing a good job.  Be confident in your abilities and others will follow.

People find it hard to follow a leader that doesn’t know where they’re going.

Be clear on strategy – if you are clear on where you’re going and how you’re going to get there, you can communicate this to your team so that everyone is sure of their direction. Motivating people is a lot easier if you’re all clear about goals.

If you’d like to know more about Executive and Leadership Coaching, email

07785 996917