Not in the Job Description

Across the lobby, I spotted Kim. Out of seven supervisors, she had just been promoted to manager. She had a good team, positive vibes, but I could see Kim was a bit nervous in her new role.

“How’s it going?” I asked.

“Pretty good, so far,” Kim replied. “I think I can handle all the stuff I am supposed to do. It’s that other stuff, I am worried about.”

“What other stuff?”

“Team stuff, morale, the stuff not in my new job description. You talk about bringing value to my team. I want to do that, but I am not sure what it means.”

“It’s not that difficult,” I replied. “Just think back, when you were a supervisor. What did your manager do that really helped you, I mean, really helped you become the manager you are today? Was it barking orders at you? Bossing you around? Yelling at you when you screwed up? Solving problems for you?”

“No,” Kim replied. “It was none of those things.”

“So, think about it. What were the specific things your manager did that brought value to your problem solving and decision making?”

4 thoughts on “Not in the Job Description

  1. Travis

    This is good advice if, and only if, you have had a manager that really helped you. I am struck by the number of managers I have worked with who did not bring value to the problem solving and decision making. The only value they provided was as sort of anti-pattern.

    1. Tom Foster Post author

      Hi, Travis. Yes, the problem with most management training is that we end up, especially under pressure, treating other people the way we were treated by our prior managers. Often, it’s the one we hated the most. -Tom


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