Have you made the mind shift? Have you received a promotion and found yourself now training individuals, or receiving a supervisory role? If you have then great and congratulations, you have worked hard for it, or you wouldn’t have received the promotion. The part that some miss when getting a promotion is the part that it now takes a shift in your mind to complete the process. It can be a challenge to do this and many people go overboard and become a tyrant if they don’t understand the process and watch it closely. I have seen it happen many times in my career and it is sad when the person takes themselves so seriously that they stop relating to the team members below them. The mind shift however is not only internal but external. This was very tough for me when I began as a new Supervisor because my teammates were older than me and we all started at the same time. This caused some rifts in the chain that got to the point that some people ended up leaving because they weren’t getting their way, unfortunate but true.
Getting that promotion and fulfilling it successfully takes some finesse that not everyone holds. New Supervisors often think that leading their team is done by barking out orders with a “my way or the highway” type attitude and it couldn’t be farther from the truth. As a Supervisor you are really there as a support mechanism for your team. On the other side you are also their role model and example, and balancing the two fronts can be a challenge. So how do you do that? Well realize that you now have to watch your behaviour in and out of the workplace. Once you step up it can change what you do in your personal life. Going to the company Christmas party and getting drunk out of your mind might not be the best display of character for your team. As much as you should have a good time at the party making sure that you understand the boundaries is very important. Just take a look at the Mayor of Toronto and you can see this play out in real life. Understanding your role as a leader is about setting an example on the outside and supporting your team on the inside. It can be challenging, but rewarding at the same time. Work at it seriously and you will go far as a new Supervisor.
About the Author
Bruce Outridge is a business and leadership consultant and author of the books Running By The Mile, Driven to Drive, and Starting an Artistic Business in 12 Easy Steps. For more information on Bruce and his work please visit his website at www.outridge.ca