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Do you want to move into management? Making the move may generate fresh challenges and place new responsibilities on your shoulders, but the rewards can be great too. Preparation and a willingness to learn new skills are key to ensuring you adapt and contribute successfully as part the management structure of your company.
For candidates looking to move into management there are some key factors to think about:
Hone your management skills
Regardless of whether you gained an MBA prior to taking up your current role, keeping your management skills up to date is essential. There are plenty of part-time management courses and recognised qualifications which can be undertaken in your own time. You can also ask your company for support in terms of coaching, mentoring or training so that you can develop the skills required to perform your role effectively.
Soft skills are a premium
People skills are essential for anyone wishing to succeed in a managerial role. Your capacity to really listen (and we mean REALLY listen) combined with your ability to deliver a point or message in a positive way that people will respond to are essential traits, but these skills need to be honed. An ability to solve problems and think laterally will also stand in your favour as a manager’s life is rarely plain sailing.
Know what you want and what’s expected of you
Moving into management will place a greater amount of daily challenges at your feet. It’s essential you understand your company’s immediate and long-term work priorities. In turn, you need to clearly communicate your specific and measurable goals to your new team.
Time to let go
Delegation is key to a successful transition into any management role. You may have been the very best at what you once did but now someone else needs to take up that role and you need to empower and inspire them to do just that. Effective delegating is about using your experience to guide others by dictating the ‘what’ (outcome) and ‘why’ (purpose), but allowing people to choose the ‘how’ (method) for themselves.
Learn to lead
Moving into a management role you will be expected to become a leader, communicating a vision of success, enabling your team to do their best work and inspiring others to achieve their potential. It’s no easy task but to be an effective manager, incorporate leadership skills (like organisation, planning, problem solving and team motivation) into your management style so that you can successfully grow and develop the people around you.
Take the practical route
If you find there’s no room to manoeuvre into a management position within your organisation, don’t be disheartened. A career shift to an SME or start up company might provide you with the opportunity to kick-start your management career, boost your CV with a management role and gain the experience you are looking for.
Search for management positions and find out what opportunities are available to you.