Employee Development

One of the most difficult transitions within a company is moving from being an individual contributor to being a manager. What makes it so difficult? First of all, the temptation to continue being an individual contributor is very strong; it’s what you’ve always done, it’s what you know how to do; you do it correctly and you do it quickly. The problem with this is that now you have new responsibilities and if you continue to do what you’ve always done, two things happen: 1) you have no time for your new duties and 2) those under you don’t grow.


So what are the areas you, as a manager, need to be aware of in order to develop and grow your direct reports and thereby actually become a manager of people? People, I might add, who are getting the work done, not just you getting it done.


  • What are they good at? Observe their strengths and weaknesses. Listen to their voice tone and notice their body language as they perform their tasks. What are you seeing? Does the energy seem to go up when they are doing certain tasks and go down when working on others?
  • What are their career aspirations? Are they ambitious, self-starters, proactive? Or do they prefer to do the work they are doing currently? Either is okay but will lead you in different directions as you steer them into new skills or deepening their existing skills.
  • Learn to give good feedback and employee evaluation sessions. Make these not just about where they need to improve but also about areas where they are doing well. Use these sessions to pull forth areas in which they want to assume more responsibility.
  • Delegate more to stretch them. Most people want new areas of responsibility and when you give it to them, it builds their confidence. When they know you believe in them to get a new job done, this encourages their own self-belief. Your delegating frees up time for your new management skills and stretches them in new areas of growth.
  • Are they task oriented or people oriented? We need both of course, but those who love to work with people may be best at working with customers and those who favor tasks may be best at the detail, pen to paper type of work. Do they have communication skills? Every team needs good communication in order to be successful. Put a good mix of strengths and skills on a project or team.


Knowing and expanding the strengths, values, aspirations, work and learning styles of your team can benefit not only you, but also the company in getting the desired results. Leading by role-modeling via delegating, listening, giving good feedback and evaluation, being a resource for their new and deepening skills training teaches them how to do the same. In addition, when it comes time for you to move up from your first management position, you’ll have one or more of your direct reports ready to step up into your position. Give me a call or email if I can be assistance in your transition and the development of your team.                     702-240-1866     –           judy@movingon.net


~ by transformativethoughts on March 20, 2017.

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