New Managers: How To Fit In

When managers are brought in, assigned or moved to another department, it upsets the apple cart a bit. Perhaps you have been, or are, that manager now. How do you fit in? You don’t know them and they don’t know you. And they are wary of your presence. No doubt you have valid opinions that are worthy of being heard. Wait! Here are some tips that will help you ease into this new role and gain your new team’s confidence.

Five New Manager Actions to Fit In:

  1. Find the Big Talker: Often there is a loquacious member of the team who dominates conversations. Discern whether they are a rainmaker or wallflower. Either way, in the beginning, let them run their “soapbox” for a few weeks. Don’t criticize them too soon. Notice how the balance of the team relates to him/her first, remain flexible. Notice the value they bring or don’t bring. You will quiet them soon enough if needed.
  2. Stay grounded.  Don’t get over keyed-up/wired about an issue. You could de-credential yourself.
  3. Delay finality to issues. Notice first where the Team is and keep your conclusions ambiguous just a bit longer. You will have plenty of time to demonstrate your decision making power later on once you gain their trust.
  4. Don’t Make Friends. Get to know your new team but do not be too casual too soon. Stay poised, listen more than talk and begin to establish your authority slowly.
  5. Stay Calm. Don’t over-battle an issue. Practice forbearance through patient restraint, keeping yourself in check when provoked. Notice who your supporters are and who your foes are. You will need them.

As you enter a new team, they will have their guards up. Good, so will you. However, when you follow these tips, they will be more likely to let their guards down first and you will have an opportunity to see who you really have on your team. Then, you can manage them to success!