3 Biggest Mistakes New Managers Make and How to Avoid Them

3 Biggest Mistakes New Managers Make and How to Avoid Them

by Sara J. Baker, Ed.D.

Being a new manager can be daunting. You suddenly have a team of people looking to you for leadership and direction. It can be tempting to assume that your team doesn’t need any help and that they will be able to figure things out on their own. However, this is often not the case.

Three Biggest Mistakes of New Managers

One of the biggest mistakes new managers make is assuming that their team doesn’t need direction. Without clear expectations and guidance, your team will likely become frustrated and lost. Another mistake new managers make is micromanaging. It’s important to trust your team and give them the freedom to work independently. Finally, new managers often fail to provide feedback. This leaves your team feeling unsupported and can lead to frustration and dissatisfaction. By avoiding these three mistakes, new managers can ensure that they are successful in their new roles.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these big mistakes new managers make and how you can avoid them.

Not Providing Direction

One of the biggest mistakes a new manager can make is assuming that their team doesn’t need direction. Just because your team is experienced and has been doing the job for a while doesn’t mean they don’t need guidance from you. As the manager, it’s your job to ensure that everyone is on the same page and working towards the same goal. Even if your team knows how to complete their job tasks, they still need to be reminded of the larger vision and alignment with your team’s goals. If you don’t provide direction, then your team will quickly become disengaged and their work will suffer.

Take the time to sit down with your team and explain what you expect from them. Let them know what your vision is and how they can help to achieve it. By communicating clearly and setting expectations, you’ll create a much more cohesive and productive team.

Key takeaway: Avoid this huge mistake by not assuming your team doesn’t need direction, especially if the team is new or inexperienced. A manager’s role is to provide clear direction and support for their team so that they can be successful.

3 Biggest Mistakes New Managers Make and How to Avoid Them: Provide Vision and Direction

Micromanaging the Team

Another one of the most common mistakes that new managers make is micromanaging their team. When you micromanage, you take on too much control and try to do everything yourself. This can be frustrating for your team, who may feel like they are not being given the opportunity to use their skills and abilities. In addition, micromanaging can lead to feelings of resentment and burnout.

If you find yourself falling into the trap of micromanaging, it is important to step back and give your team the space to work independently. Allow them to make decisions and take ownership of their projects. This will help to build trust and respect within your team, and it will ultimately make you a more effective manager.

3 Biggest Mistakes New Managers Make and How to Avoid Them: Don't Micromanage

Key takeaway: Micromanaging can often result in feelings of control and insecurity on the part of the manager, and it also tends to stifle creativity and productivity in the team. A better approach is to provide guidance and support, but then trust your team to get the work done.

Failure to Provide Feedback

One of the biggest mistakes new managers make is failing to give feedback. After all, feedback is essential for helping employees improve their performance and reach their potential. Without feedback, employees are left to guess what they are doing right and wrong. This can lead to frustration and a feeling of being unsupported. Furthermore, without feedback, it is difficult for managers to identify areas where employees need help or coaching.

New managers should make a commitment to giving regular feedback, both positive and negative. By taking the time to give meaningful feedback, new managers can set their teams up for success.

Key takeaway: Feedback is one of the most important tools a manager has for helping their team grow and improve. Failing to give feedback can leave team members feeling lost and unsure of what they need to do to improve.

3 Biggest Mistakes New Managers Make and How to Avoid Them: Give Fedback

Tips for New Managers to Avoid These Mistakes

Assuming that your team doesn’t need direction, micromanaging them and not providing feedback are three of the biggest mistakes a new manager can make. Without direction, your team will flounder and fail to meet expectations. Micromanaging will only serve to alienate your team members and make them resentful. And without feedback, your team will never know how they’re doing or where they need to improve. By avoiding these three mistakes, you’ll be well on your way to being a successful manager.

Here are a few tips to help you get started on the right foot:

  • Make sure you understand your role and the responsibilities that come with it.
  • Take the time to get to know your team and what they’re capable of.
  • Set clear expectations and communicate them effectively to your team.
  • Give feedback regularly, both positive and negative.
  • Take the time to learn and grow as a manager by seeking out quality leadership development.

There is no one right way to do things, so experiment until you find what works best for you.

By following these tips new managers can avoid the most common mistakes and set themselves up for success. Managing a team is not always easy, but with the right tools and approach, it can be a rewarding experience. Good luck!

Dr. Sara Baker, Founder of the Leadership Reformation

About the Author

Dr. Sara Baker is a thought leader in the area of positive leadership and healthy workplaces. With over 20 years of experience leading private and public organizations, she understands the challenges that employees face every day.

Sara is the author of Toxic Workplace Survival Guide, an essential resource for anyone who wants to thrive in spite of a toxic work environment or who is ready to quietly quit. In addition to her writing, Sara provides online courses for leadership development and coping with a toxic workplace.

Sara enjoys spending time with her family and friends on her farm in Texas.

Dr. Sara Baker, Founder of the Leadership Reformation

About the Author

Dr. Sara Baker is a thought leader in the area of positive leadership and healthy workplaces. With over 20 years of experience leading private and public organizations, she understands the challenges that employees face every day.

Sara is the author of Toxic Workplace Survival Guide, an essential resource for anyone who wants to thrive in spite of a toxic work environment or who is ready to quietly quit. In addition to her writing, Sara provides online courses for leadership development and coping with a toxic workplace.

Sara enjoys spending time with her family and friends on her farm in Texas.

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