Some of the Worst Mistakes First Time Managers Make | Guide

Birdseye view of managers shaking hands over a large wooden tables spread with documents and a laptop.

If part of your career plan is to get in to management then you need to be prepared for it. While you may be a great employee, delving in to management is a whole new ball game. You are going to need to deal with more responsibilities and with an increased spotlight on everything that you do. Here are some of the worst mistakes new bosses make:

1.      Not Ascertaining Relationships

Going from someone’s peer to their superior can be a difficult scenario to manage. The shift in relationship can mean that often you aren’t taken seriously enough or falling outs can occur. Having clear communication with your employees about what they can and cannot discuss with you is important. You need to establish boundaries now you have more responsibility.

Birdseye view of a managers bullet journal open on calendar page and a  cup of coffee sitting on top.

2.      No Support Platform

Every manager will need a support platform in order to be successful. Especially first time managers. While you may have been a great employee, you might not be prepared for all the new responsibilities that are going to come your way. Surrounding yourself with people that are going to help will make the transition from employee to boss much easier.

3.      Implementing Too Much Change

You might be going in to management with endless ideas of how to improve the company, and that’s great. But trying to cause too much change as soon as you start the job will be disruptive. It can annoy your superiors as well as being too difficult to manage for your employees.

4.      Don’t Set Out Long Term Goals

New managers can sometimes be so focused on making sure that they are content that they forget about the people that they’re responsible for. Discuss with your team individually the long term goals they have for themselves. It will give you a good idea of how to manage them as an individual.

Three managers sitting at a desk in a meeting.

5.      Too Friendly

It can be difficult becoming a boss of someone that you used to be friendly with around the office. If you are friends with someone you are managing then it needs to be out of the office. Keeping professional distance will help you improve your career. This isn’t to say that you become the grumpy boss, just keep a balance in your relationships.

6.      New Managers: Avoiding Difficult Conversations

New managers can too often avoid delivering negative feedback. They will try too hard to be liked and won’t be direct with people. This will hinder you in both the short and long term. If you are honest with people then you will be more respected.