Scaling The Ladder


Are you ready to be a manager?

Who wouldnít want a suave office, a fatter pay check, and more decision-making power?

While the big bump up the rungs of a steep career ladder might promise you all the above, the job of managing people and being key decision-maker is no walk in the park. The transition to the role is even more challenging.

The prospects can be intimidating enough for anyone to start doubting themselves. But challenges aside, being in a managerial role can be very rewarding once youíve gotten the hang of it.

So, whether you are about to get that promotion, are pondering about your career pathway, or would like to prepare yourself for the future, hereís how you would know if youíre ready for the big responsibility of being in management.

You know how to let go

As a manager, your job is to deal with the bigger picture. You wonít have to deal with those tedious daily to-do tasks anymore.

The great challenge here is to let go of these responsibilities you once used to carry out on a regular basis. This means no micromanaging, and instead doing all it takes to focus and move your team toward a common overall mission.

Youíre prepared to take responsibilities

Your job can be pretty sweet when you make the right decisions and the right moves. Likewise, it can get pretty ugly when you donít. Being in a managerial position means a heavier weightage is put on your decisions, which would lead to bigger rewards but also bigger consequences.

Besides that stress, you now are also responsible for not just yourself, but for your team too. Any screw ups within your team will come directly to you to solve. Are you ready for all these responsibilities?

You have realistic expectations

As a leader, you have to be realistic in your expectations for yourself and your team. Set goals that are challenging yet achievable. Take on projects that align to your organisationís goals. Say no to suggestions and proposals that donít, even if they are good ideas.

Being realistic with your time expectations can save you time, stress, and drastically heighten your teamís quality of work.

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You know how to motivate and inspire

To get your job done in the most efficient way possible, you need to have a motivated team. This goes beyond dishing out instruction after instruction.

You know that in order to have a high-functioning team, youíll need to exercise patience in coaching and guiding each of them. Youíll need to know each member of your team well enough to know what makes them tick, and leverage that to optimise your teamís performance.

Youíll need to communicate the vision that you have for your team, and the whys and hows of the matter. Youíll need to inspire.

You donít let perfectionism get in the way

Yes, you want the job to be done well, but perfection is not always necessary, and often is time-consuming and stress-inducing. You specify the end result and let your team mates be in charge of execution.

The end result may not be as Ďperfectí as it would have been if you did it yourself, but you know that perfection is sometimes subjective and in the end, the job is completed. Controlling every aspect of the task would mean micromanaging Ė which is a big managerial no-no.

You are idealistic

But not overly idealistic, in a pain-in-the-neck kind of way. You are clear about what is right and wrong, and you try your best to keep by your principles.

You are now the role model to your team, and you set the example of what goes and what doesnít. Furthermore you realise that should you falter from your pedestal, the consequences can be quite dire for employee morale.

You are great with people

Great people skills are a hallmark of a great manager. Youíll need to have the ability to connect with others, especially your team, on a daily basis. This goes way deeper than simply giving out instructions to your team mates. Sometimes, youíll need to let a little of your personal side show to your team, no matter how introverted you are.

As a leader, you would also have to face the prospect of being an advisor to your team mates, even on personal matters. You recognise that your compassion will gain you your teamís trust and respect not just as a leader, but as a human being.

You donít let your position get to you

You donít think of yourself as above the rest. Sure, your remarkable skills and talent may have got you to where you are now, but nobody likes a pompous leader. You know how to talk to your employees on their level while still commanding the respect that you deserve.

This helps you in forging a strong bond between you and your team, and makes you the go-to person for your team, thus reinforcing your position as a good leader.

You are not threatened by conflict

Part of being a leader is handling conflicts effectively. You understand that human emotions are bound to clash at the workplace, and that it is not the end of the world.

You are fair and just

Speaking of conflict, no matter how close or distant you are from your colleagues and team mates, you know that when handling conflict, you need to make a decision that is fair and just.

You will need to be able to step out of your own emotions and look at a situation objectively. In other words, you know how to separate logical thinking from your emotions.

Feeling confident? Getting intimidated?

Fear not, as no one goes into a managerial role knowing exactly how to carry themselves. The important part is to take every victory and mistake as a learning process towards your constant effort of self-improvement. All the best!


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