CRITICAL SKILLS FOR NEW MANAGERS

Every seasoned manager at some point was a new manager. Becoming a manager can fill one with both excitement and trepidation at the same time. New managers are faced with the daunting task of managing ones time, colleagues, taking decisions and owning responsibility for the outcomes of those decisions as well as handling increased oversight and expectations.

Gaining managerial status definitely has its perks and is undoubtedly a capability enhancing function that defines new dimensions for self- development and leadership. Many a new manager is however at a loss when faced with new demands or are lacking in the requisite skills.

What then are the needed skills that a new manager should possess?  These skills are essential success factors for new managers, they make managerial responsibilities more rewarding and fulfilling, and elicits the right response and results from subordinates.

These skills include:

INTERPERSONAL SKILLS

One key skill for a new manager is the ability to communicate and relate effectively with superiors, colleagues and subordinates alike. A combination of these abilities are referred to interpersonal skills. Interpersonal skills include: Verbal, Listening, Non- Verbal Communication, Questioning, Emotional Intelligence, and Assertiveness Skills. (Communication Skills) (Emotional Intelligence for Managers)

DECISION MAKING SKILLS

This is another key skill for new managers, it involves making significant decisions affecting the organization. The ability to take rational decisions involves critical thinking, analysis and risk assessment.

3 Key Steps to making good decisions

  • Establish the intended outcome
  • Generate Alternatives
  • Weigh the alternatives against objective and action the most feasible one

CONFLICT MANAGEMENT SKILLS

Conflict is a given in any situation where you have individuals from different backgrounds, orientation and exposure working together towards pre-defined goals. It is imperative for new managers to have conflict management skills, especially if they are managing project teams. Conflict does not necessarily need to have a negative outcome but it can be a powerful tool towards building better relationships and teams.

Points to Note in Conflict Management

  • Don’t ignore conflicts or allow them to fester
  • Address the real issues not the imagined ones
  • Focus on the ultimate objective
  • Use neutral controlled language
  • Find the best possible compromise grounds if necessary

TIME MANAGEMENT SKILLS

Time is a precious resource that no one has a limitless supply of, including new managers who have to allocate this resource amidst new work demands, project schedules and coordinating subordinates. Two of the greatest approach a new manager can use in this regard is prioritization and delegation.

ORGANIZATIONAL SKILLS

Some people are natural organizers, others have to learn it, whichever one, ability to schedule, prioritize and implement day- to –day operational tasks is a necessary skill set for most, nonetheless for new managers.

Assuming a managerial role brings a whole new dimension to organizing the progression of tasks and assignments. The good part is that for the new manager who already has or has developed time management skills, being better organized is a natural outcome.

What More Do You Need As a New Manager

  • Value subordinates
  • Encourage feedback
  • Be willing to learn

Every new manager that aspires to succeed in his or her new role and attain corporate credibility needs to be armed with these crucial skills in order to lead effectively and efficiently.

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