9 New Manager Warning Signs to Pay Attention To

6 different people point the finger at one man under a rain cloud

New managers want to succeed but often don’t know how. And their mistaken idea of what it takes to lead and be responsible for the performance of others gets new supervisors in deep trouble.

If you are part of the team that promotes individual contributors to management positions, it is incumbent upon you to see that they are prepared for the new leadership role. New managers need training to set them up to succeed. If they fail, they make take the whole team down with them.

Watch out for these 9 signs that your new managers are struggling and on the brink of failure.

  1. They take little personal interest in their team members.
    Building a team and establishing the new dynamics that a new leader brings can be challenging. The best way to gain the trust of new team members is to get to know them on a personal and professional basis. What do they like to do on the job and off? How do they want to contribute to the team? What changes would they make in the way the team has worked together so far? What are their personal and professional goals and aspirations? Inexperienced managers almost always underestimate this aspect of leadership.
  2. They manage by instilling anxiety or making threats.
    They are abrupt and abrasive in their communications. Perhaps this was the way they were managed in the past but it is very destructive to the individual employees and to the team as a whole. This approach is not sustainable. It leads to dis-engaged employees, lower productivity and higher attrition. Make sure that your new managers are not putting their teams under constant and ineffective performance pressure. Download Whitepaper: Performance Pressure: How Much Should a New Leader Push?
  3. They don’t know how to delegate.
    Without trust that their team can perform at a high enough level, new managers are tempted to try to do too much themselves or to micromanage. Either way, their employees can feel undervalued and resentful. Good managers know how to set expectations, clarify roles and responsibilities and empower their team members to do their job.
  4. They treat team members unfairly.
    This can go both ways…they may favor some over others creating an unhealthy political environment or they may overlook poor performance. Leaders need to have an even hand in dealing with their employees. Substandard performance needs to be compassionately confronted and a fair plan put in place for improvement. High performers should be motivated with differentiated rewards and results should be transparent to the entire team.
  5. They don’t know how to give feedback.
    The main job of a new manager is to create a high performing team. This requires giving relevant and timely feedback on a regular basis so employees learn what is expected, what works and what behaviors are discouraged. This is how they learn and how organization values are supported and reinforced. Performance expectation and performance status ambiguity is the enemy of high performing managers.
  6. They are quick to blame and don’t have “the back” of their team members.
    Finger pointing undermines the trust that good leaders foster by shouldering the responsibility for the team when things go wrong. Good managers are also ready to pass along kudos when things go right.
  7. They don’t keep the team well informed.
    Teams that are isolated from the news at the organization level feel out of sync and discounted. Important information should be shared. Transparency builds trust, the foundation for any productive team. In fact, recent organizational alignment research found that information flow and transparency is the fourth most important factor in creating a high performance team.
  8. They avoid making decisions.
    Once the relevant information is gathered, managers should be able to sift through and make a decision. Too much waffling creates confusion on the team and loss of respect. Strong managers are decisive.
  9. They don’t take a strategic view.
    New managers are often so caught up in the day-to-day tasks that they neglect to look forward and plan for the future. The best leaders set aside time each day to take stock of what challenges lie ahead and how to address them. They think laterally and do not get stuck in the “weeds.”

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On behalf of Roche and my staff I would like to sincerely thank you for your help with this. The English as a Second Language (ESL) assessment and coaching that you provided for our team was a great success.

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Roche

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LSA is an instrumental training outsourcing partner in helping us to build management capacity and strategically invest in our people. Their flexibility, depth, and breadth of expertise allows us to deliver top quality solutions that are directly tied to key business plans. Their ability to custom design, deliver, and evaluate our Management Curriculum has been excellent. They are true business partners and a pleasure to work with.

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LSA helped us design and deliver a blended learning solution for our leaders to help drive our growth plans in a way that aligned with our specific culture and values. LSA understood our business, had deep expertise in the content areas, tailored the programs to fit our specific needs, and delivered great results. They constantly strive to deliver business impact and align their solutions with our business initiates, culture, and performance management systems. I highly recommend them to anyone looking to take their leaders to the next level.”

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The Next Generation Management Development courses have helped me communicate more effectively with my peers and teammates. By utilizing effective communication techniques such as clarifying and confirming, and asking open ended questions, I have been able to clarify and understand information in situations where I would have otherwise asked limited questions and made false assumptions.

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PalmSource has found our relationship with LSA extremely beneficial. We worked closely with LSA to customize the right Management Training Program solution to meet our unique business needs. LSA is a quality organization, one that I’d recommend to any company looking for a first class training and consulting partner.

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Vice President of Human Resources

I have worked with other training companies and found it to be more of a seller/buyer relationship than one of matching the right expertise to our business issues. That’s what LSA does – ask the hard questions, listen, and understand our business needs. We receive the benefit of their expertise from assistance with personal development plans to enhancing team performance, to looking at enterprise-wide challenges. It’s all about helping our business succeed as we grow. Right now, LSA is providing great ideas, a fresh approach, and valuable guidance as we develop our management team and accelerate our client relationship management results.

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Chris Wells
Vice President, HR and IT

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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Rambus

VNUS Medical has been very pleased with the effective management development programs that LSA Global has delivered for us over the last four years. The programs have been universally facilitated by experienced and best in class instructors. The knowledge gained by our management team has been put into practice very quickly. VNUS is very happy to be working in partnership with LSA because they consistently deliver excellent programs that receive exceptional feedback from our management team.

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Director Human Resources

Hyperion has a commitment to lifelong learning. LSA helps us provide the right business sales training, management training programs, and leadership development programs at the right time to meet the needs of both individuals and departments. I especially appreciate their ability to listen to my needs and recommend the appropriate facilitators, solutions and content.

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Hyperion

I had been working with LSA for many years with my prior company. Currently, I’m with a company who hadn’t done much basic management skills training. After identifying and presenting a program recently, our managers are excited and talking in the halls about the great experience. LSA saves us time in delivering the right training for our needs.

Phyllis Moracco
HR Director

I am very impressed with the quality of work and talent. LSA did a great job of listening to my needs and providing the exact management training program expertise I needed to get the job done.

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Director, Business Planning & Analysis

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