Top performers are generally spotted as management material. These employees are offered an opportunity to step up when a management position becomes available. It’s viewed as a reward, as a method to keep the top performer engaged and to grow talent within the organization. The reality of losing the department’s top performer is quickly felt by the management team. This often gives rise to the new supervisor becoming a working manager; one who is asked to continue performing in the previous position, in addition to assuming overall departmental goals and personnel supervision.
Most new supervisors believe they will have authority and freedom to do what they think is right for the department. Initially, they don’t see the web of internal relationships often with conflicting demands that require attention. There is not an immediate understanding of the need to work with the organization’s various departments and external customers.
The new supervisor soon realizes the ability displayed in their previous position has little connection to supervisory skills. A top performer may understand an aspect of the industry, while a supervisor needs a broader understanding of the organization’s fit within the industry. A supervisor shouldalso understand how that fit affects the organization’s culture.
A thorough knowledge of policies and procedures; level of their authority and interdepartmental functions will help the new supervisor avoid falling into the trap of becoming a go-between.
A reluctance to ask for help is a mistake commonly made by new supervisors. In many cases, this sink or swim mentality is real. It is hardly the way to grow talent from within or reward the top performer. The new supervisor’s immediate manager should plan to provide structured support and solicit the assistance of Human Resources (HR) to guide the new supervisor through the related policies.
Upon accepting the position, the law views the supervisor as the employer. The new supervisor needs an immediate understanding of what information to report to the HR department. Human Resources needs to initiate the training of policies related to discrimination, harassment, conflicts of interest, ethics, and wage complaints early in the supervisor’s career. The new supervisor’s manager and HR need to open their doors and structure time to review the new supervisor’s responsibilities on an ongoing basis.
Pocket Pal – Helpful Tips For New Supervisors
It was suggested that a pocket-sized To-Do list would be helpful for new supervisors. Take a look
at the list below. Feel free to email Strategic Management with tips you think should be included.