What To Do as a New Manager When You Don’t Know What To Do

A man in a suit with an umbrella is sitting at the end of a long dock just thinking about how to manage well

The shift from being an individual contributor to taking on the role of manager is huge. And very few are well prepared to succeed without a lot of training and support.

Even experienced managers stumble and fail as leaders. Management can be daunting! But there are steps you can take that will minimize mistakes and maximize your performance and that of your team. And those steps are the same for new managers who are in over their head and for leaders who have been leading for a while but somewhat incompetently.

For Struggling Leaders
First for those who wonder if the problems their organization is facing are par for the course or if they as managers are at fault, here are the kinds of questions you should ask yourself:

  • Is everyone around you running in different directions and apparently very busy but accomplishing little? If so, they lack the focus and purpose a good leader can inspire in them.
  • Do you only take action when you have consensus? It’s best when the team agrees but it’s not necessary. Good leaders listen to the ideas and advice of their team, make a decision that seems best to them, and then act upon it. That’s called being decisive and leading.
  • Are you always shifting goals and timelines for yourself and others? When there’s a lack of accountability, performance suffers. When you put a stake in the ground, hold yourself and your employees accountable for achieving the objective. Sure there are times when you don’t make the numbers as you had hoped and predicted…but there should be a good reason and you should have had plenty of warning.
  • Have you become too often the bearer of bad news to your stakeholders and customers and find yourself blaming others? Clearly something is wrong. Either you have committed to impossible goals or you and your team are incapable of achieving the possible. Good leaders know the difference, take corrective action, and accept the blame for failure.

For New Managers
At some point you will be asked to tackle a project for which you have no experience…at all. You panic with the fear that your incompetence will be obvious and the cause of your eventual firing. But take a moment to breathe and consider a better way to handle the challenge.

The answer for both? Get help from experts!
Know what you do not know and find someone who is willing and able to help you. In fact, you should never go it alone. When you do, you miss an opportunity to learn better ways to manage and lead.

There is never a good reason to charge forward on your own when you don’t know where you’re going. Even the best leaders value expert advice from others.  Quality, relevant, results-oriented new manager training can be a first step especially for new managers. Then you need to show some vulnerability in admitting where you need help. Find someone who has tackled similar challenges before and will guide you. Someday, as you gain in experience as a manager and broaden your knowledge, you may well be the one who is asked for a hand-up!

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Thank you to LSA Global for their partnership and support in helping us to design and roll-out our valuable management development training program. I personally have partnered with LSA Global at four of my previous companies. It continues to be a delight working with LSA. We look forward to partnering with them at Blackhawk Networks for future training and consulting needs.

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I consistently look to LSA Global when I need custom programs put together for my client groups. I can always count on LSA to do a thorough needs analysis and to put together spectacular programs that are well received. Their management development and performance management expertise and professionalism make them one of my top-rated learning and development partners.

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The refreshing thing about LSA is that they focus on understanding our business situation and helping me succeed instead of selling a product. With over 150 experts, they are an invaluable resource that helps me deliver higher quality results faster. I recommend them to anyone looking to improve the performance of their workforce.

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We recently partnered with LSA Global to offer our Supervisors and Managers a customized two-day management training program. Everyone who attended said it was by far the best management training program they had ever attended. The content was rich and highly interactive. The case studies were relevant. Each participant walked away from the training much better equipped to lead their teams.

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We have worked with LSA Global for our learning and development needs and have always had great success. They helped us recently with customized Management Workshops that we held for the second time. It was fantastic, and I would highly recommend LSA to anyone that is attempting to get immediate and impactful improvements.

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We engaged LSA to design and deliver a 6-month custom executive coaching program for a group of our key leaders. The focus of the program was to help a core group of senior leaders to leverage previous investments in management training, to ensure the engagement and retention of key employees, and to push critical strategic initiatives forward. Even with the high expectations of our senior people, LSA has completely exceeded our expectations. I would recommend them to anyone looking to create and implement a custom coaching methodology using proven tools to drive true change.

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We value our relationship with LSA Global. We came to LSA because we wanted to improve overall behavioral based interviewing capabilities of our managers to increase the probability of both hiring top talent and future leaders. LSA designed a highly customized solution for our business and culture. We are currently rolling out this solution to our leaders. I would highly recommend LSA Global as a top quality resource.

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I’ve partnered with LSA Global at two companies now, and I consider them a valuable and trusted training and consulting resource. They recommended just the right solution to address our management development needs and have wonderful facilitators that match YuMe’s culture and style of our management team. I would highly recommend LSA Global to any company wanting to deliver quality learning solutions with a valuable learning and development partner.

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HR Director

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Working with LSA Global has proven to be extremely valuable and worthwhile. LSA understands our business, has deep expertise in content areas, and tailors the programs to deliver great results. The facilitator was extremely knowledgeable about Working Globally with India and her energy and passion made the session interesting, fun, and enjoyable for all that attended. The participants walked away extremely pleased along with highly useful practices and tools. I would highly recommend LSA Global to any company that has partners or offices in India.

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