Provisional Blog

Management 101: Mistakes to Avoid When You’re the Boss

October 3rd, 2017

As one of the leading staffing services firms in Spokane, Washington, Provisional knows that when you’re new to managing a team, you have a lot of responsibility on your plate. You’re going from taking care of your work to managing and overseeing the work of others. It can be exciting, stressful, nerve wracking – and full of potential pitfalls.

And in fact, the first year in a manager’s role is often littered with mistakes; so, you’ll likely make your fair share. However, there are some common ones you can avoid with a little planning and know-how. Here’s a look at a few:

You don’t ask for help.

If you’re a new manager, you have a lot to learn on the job. And that’s ok. Don’t pretend you have all the answers or know how to do something when really, you don’t. It’s best to ask for input, advice and feedback – whether from your staff or your boss – to ensure you’re making the right moves and decisions.

You micromanage.

Another common problem among new managers involves micro-managing. There’s a lot that’s at stake and you’re still getting to know your team, so this can be understandable. However, keep in mind that when you micromanage, you’re sending the message that you don’t trust your team. This, in turn, can undermine your relationship and create a toxic culture. So give your people room to do their jobs.

You don’t have boundaries.

When your employee comes to you with a request, or your boss asks you to take on a new project, your first instinct is to say “yes.” After all, you don’t want to disappoint. But if you don’t have boundaries – and can’t turn down projects that are clearly a bad fit for you – you’re going to wind up stretched thin and burned out. Likewise, if you agree to everything your employees ask of you, you’ll end up making promises you can’t keep. So establish clear boundaries from the start.

You don’t get to know your team.

As a manager, your success now depends on your team. That’s why, if you want them to produce optimal results, you need to get to know each one individually and what motivates them. So rather than sweeping in and making changes overnight, take some time to learn the ins and outs of your staff and its unique dynamic. Schedule personal meetings to listen and learn from each one, as well as group-wide meetings to talk about big picture goals and get their thoughts and input. The better you know your team, the easier it will be to manage them.

If you find that you’re struggling in any of these areas, take a deep breath and relax. No new manager hits the ground running and delivers an error-free performance. So ask for help when you need it, set clear boundaries and get to know your people.

If you’re struggling with finding good people for your team, the experts at Provisional can help. As one of the leading staffing services firms in Spokane, Washington, we provide customized staffing solutions to our clients all over the Northwest. Just give us a call today to learn more about how we can help you.

6 Common Mistakes New Managers Make

April 26th, 2011

Getting promoted to manager is certainly a big accomplishment. But as one of the leading Spokane staffing firms, we know that almost every new manager makes some big mistakes along the way. So what are they – and how can you avoid them? Here’s a look at 6 of them:

1. Being a “know it all.”

This is probably one of the most irritating offenses to employees. Just because you’re the boss, doesn’t mean you know everything. In fact, your employees probably know a lot too and it would be in your best interest to regularly ask them for their feedback and advice.

2. Micromanaging…everyone and everything.

First of all, if you micromanage, you’re going to burn out quickly and frustrate your employees along the way. While it’s certainly understandable that you feel the pressure to help your team succeed, your employees will quickly turn against you if you micromanage everything they do. Instead, set clear expectations, goals, and timelines, but then give your employees enough autonomy to perform their jobs.

3. Not giving enough direction.

On the flip side of micromanaging is not giving enough direction. Your employees need to have a clear understanding of what you’re trying to accomplish and what they need to do to help you get there. So again, it’s important to define expectations and goals, as well as discuss how success will be measured. Ask them questions about how they will complete the work so that you know they understand the task and offer them some tips and advice for getting the job done.

4. Changing things too quickly.

Just because you’re the new boss, doesn’t mean you need to step in and change everything, especially if what’s being done is currently working well. You may be tempted to change things so they run “your way,” but remember that just because something is done differently than the way you’d do it, doesn’t mean it’s wrong.

5. Not getting to know your team members.

Now that you’re the boss, your biggest and most important task is to manage your employees. But how can you effectively do that if you don’t really know them at all? By getting to know them on a more personal level, you’ll better be able to understand what motivates them.

6. Avoiding problems.

Nobody really likes problems…or problem employees, for that matter. But issues will escalate if you don’t deal with them right away. And in fact, as the boss, it’s now your job to face those problems head on and develop solutions. Otherwise, you could be in hot water.

Now that you’re the boss, you have a lot more responsibility on your plate. But by avoiding the mistakes above, you can effectively manage your people and put yourself on the path to success.

And if one of your new responsibilities is hiring, please contact Provisional. As one of the leading staffing firms in Spokane, we can help you every step of the way, from sourcing and recruiting, to screening, interviewing, testing, verifying backgrounds, and salary negotiations.