manager leadership

Promoting team members into leadership positions is exciting—but only if they are equipped with the tools to succeed. Here’s the hard truth:

The Importance of Developing New Managers

Businesses cannot afford to ignore developing new managers for the following reasons:

Turnover: People do not quit jobs—they quit bad bosses. As many as 82 percent of U.S. workforce members would consider leaving their job due to a bad manager; 57 percent have already left.
Engagement: Managers impact at least 70 percent of your workforce’s engagement level. Moreover, businesses with good managers experience a 30 percent increase in workforce-engagement scores.
Profitability: Organizations with talented managers enjoy a 22 percent productivity boost and a 48 percent increase in profitability.

9 Tips for Developing New Managers

Here are nine practical tips for setting your new managers up for success.

1. Learn About Each Team Member

New managers should spearhead their role by first getting to know each team member.

Knowing each individual’s role, personality, strengths, and weaknesses is a good starting point in building relationships—a critical area that can build camaraderie and a positive employee experience.

In addition, new managers should ask

  • What is working and what is not working among team members?
  • What needs to change and how?

Managers can receive this information through one-on-one meetings, team meetings, or anonymous surveys.

2. Pair New Managers with Mentors

Mentorship is crucial in helping managers succeed in their roles. Studies underscore some interesting statistics:

New managers can shadow experienced managers, ask questions, and receive practical advice. Having someone as a supportive sounding board is invaluable in making the transition as stress-free as possible.

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to a mentoring program. A successful mentor and mentee relationship is built on the following factors:

  • Establishing a goal. Each new manager carries unique strengths and weaknesses, so this goal should be tailored to their individual learning and development objectives.
  • Setting up metrics. Metrics are used to measure the mentoring program’s success and will encourage both parties to stay accountable for the goal.
  • Providing and receiving feedback throughout the process. Mentorship is a process that requires adjustments to improve the program and offer more value for the mentor and mentee.

Read more about leadership development through mentoring.

3. Identify and Learn Management Styles

Sometimes, issues can arise due to conflicting management and work styles. To overcome this potential stumbling block, help new managers

  • Identify their style of management.
  • Communicate their management style with teams.
  • Learn what management techniques their team members prefer and thrive on.
  • Adapt their natural management style to the needs of their team members.

There are various leadership styles, such as the following:

  • Democratic leadership
  • Autocratic leadership
  • Laissez-faire leadership
  • Transformational leadership

Each style offers advantages in some situations and based on individual preferences. The key is to discover what works best for a given set of circumstances and better communicate with team members to ensure that everyone’s needs are being met.

4. Conduct Regular Manager Meetings

New managers need the time and space to learn from peers and have frequent conversations.

Consider having regular meetings with the members of your leadership team:

  • All managers (new and seasoned): This allows new leaders to gain insights and advice from seasoned managers.
  • New managers: Regular new-manager meetings allow those leaders to share their experiences and discuss common issues they face with teams. These conversations can give new managers the confidence they need to keep moving forward.

Both settings give time and space for leaders to practice empathy—something 87 percent of CEOs believe impacts their business’ financial performance.

two coworker reviewing work

5. Encourage Regular Feedback

Encourage new managers to open up communication channels between them and team members. This is essential in building trust and driving better performance.

Feedback provides the foundation they need to establish their roles and assert their credibility. It should be a two-way street:

  • Feedback from team members to managers: 77 percent of employees want to provide feedback more than once a year and are twice as likely to be disengaged if managers ignore their opinions and feelings.
  • Feedback from managers to team members: Managers should provide advice on improving performance and offer guidance on specific projects or tasks. The key is to be precise and focus on future actions.

Read about delivering effective feedback.

6. Prepare Managers for Change

In today’s dynamic and digital work environment, managers should be ready to adapt to any rapid shifts that arise.

Equipping managers for change may encompass some or all of the following:

  • Educating them on the three types of change management: These include enterprise change-management capability, organizational change management, and individual change management. Each of these practices focuses on navigating shifts at different levels of the organization.

Read more about these change-management practices today.

  • Communicating the company’s long-term strategy and values: According to the Harvard Business Review, managers are often concerned about unclear strategy. This leads to conflicting priorities. Providing a clear vision will help managers
    • Establish the proper protocols and initiatives with their teams.
    • Sustain the long-term vision of the company.
  • Encouraging open communication: Adaptability is critical to managing change.
    One proactive approach to bolstering adaptability among managers is encouraging open communication among their teams. Open communication focuses on sharing ideas and providing feedback. When all workforce members are involved in innovative thinking, it will make change easier.

7. Instill Value of Recognition and Reward

Recognition and rewards go a long way in bolstering the work experience:

Fostering a culture of recognition and reward begins with managers. Encourage new managers to express appreciation to team members when they do a good job. This can reinforce values, drive motivation, and build camaraderie among teams.

Methods of recognition and reward should be personalized for each individual. For example, some people may prefer private recognition, while others would love to be praised in front of the entire team or company.

8. Help Managers Feel Confident in Having Difficult Conversations

Executives report that one of frontline managers’ top weaknesses is their ability to have tough conversations with team members. This necessitates critical frontline-manager skills such as initiating courageous conversations.

Conflict is inevitable in the workplace. During difficult times, managers should have the emotional and mental grit to address challenging topics and lead productive discussions. Otherwise, problems will remain unresolved, and there may be a lack of follow-through.

Having courageous conversations entails five basic skills:

  • Planning ahead
  • Scheduling a time to chat
  • Presenting the facts
  • Listening to the team member
  • Developing a plan

9. Find a Proven Manager-Development Program

Every business needs a manager-development program. Being an effective leader is an ongoing journey that requires continuous learning and effort.

The key is to find a leadership-development program that you can easily customize to serve the needs and demands of your organization. The training should encourage active discussions and connect lessons to real-life situations.

Remember, when organizations increase the number of skilled managers, it can contribute to 147 percent higher earnings per share when compared to their competitors.

Build Better Leaders with CMOE

It’s never too early or too late to develop your leaders. CMOE offers a portfolio of Leadership Development workshops and training solutions. These programs focus on helping new and seasoned managers tackle challenges and grow in this competitive business world.

Contact our team for more information.

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About the Author
CMOE’s Design Team is comprised of individuals with diverse and complementary strengths, talents, education, and experience who have come together to bring a unique service to CMOE’s clients. Our team has a rich depth of knowledge, holding advanced degrees in areas such as business management, psychology, communication, human resource management, organizational development, and sociology.

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