Thursday, 18 January 2007

Want to be a Manager?

I thought this is something that would be of interest to a bunch of aspirants who see Management as the future… Luckily I had a chance last night to visit the M.G. Road Barista for a late cup of Cuppa-Chino ;) to add to my good fate I met Sridhar Swami an old mentor of mine working as a Management Trainer with a High Profile MNC. While the topic of discussion was Pains of being a Project Manager the topic took us to “Why You Choose to be a Project Manager”. While we were discussing I realized that if you want to be a Manager

1. You have to think if you are ready for it?
2. Is someone forcing you for it?
3. Do you really want to be there?
4. Is it the right time to be there?

While I realized that many of us who are “Accidental Managers” (Wait for my post on this … coming over the weekend) miss some or all of them, lot many of them flow in the joy of being promoted till they realize that certain fatal things have already struck their experience (You don’t have to taste poison if you have to check if it’s poison).

A few of the simple things that will come to you when you are a New Manager:

1. Decisional constipation: If you are not used to take instant actions, be it actions or corrective measures, this is the first thing you will have to repair. Many of the early age Managers fail throughout due to the constipational way of working (slow and hierarchical decisions if you don’t understand me clearly).

2. I gotta kid : This doesn’t mean that you have to take the labor pains… several Managers face the issue where they end up estimating things considering own self… Albert Alexis told me once that he takes the “Practical Leadership” sessions in 7 days while his assistant took it for 11 days in his absence… This is where it will hurt you… estimate considering the resource expertise not your expertise.

3. Don’t go the Alexander way: Many new Managers want to do everything by own… you miss the leverage of Delegation and control when you do this at the same time you spend too much of time doing everything on your own… WTF is the team for dude? Alexander delegated and won, the other way didnt work for him.You can’t run all the miles alone.

4. Dictators don’t last long, Democrats do? Another problem New Managers face is that the excitement drives them to get into meetings where they dictate what they are expecting from there reporting members…. Darn… too fast too furious…. You are jumping in the hoping lane. Make sure that you give enough time for the members to settle down and accept you as your Manager. This problem occurs mainly if you are promoted against a peer’s likes.

5. People can’t be managed: You can’t manage people, so manage the work and expectations… don’t set ones that you are not sure or aware of.

6. Learn to Manage yourself than anyone: If you are a new Manager make sure you know how to spend time and where … to be Good in your kick off you have to start safe and slow.

While this was not all that we discussed I think I am always tempted to write more …. So before I really get into be a Management Coach, I am sure you guys got a different experience when you were new to Management.

Sameer Shaikh

P.S. You may disagree with my views … don’t hesitate to comment as I am still looking for better mentors.