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CAREERS CLINIC

JOHN HACKSTON, <br />MANAGING CONSULTANT, OPP<br /><br /><strong>I got promoted, and am now managing people I&rsquo;ve worked with for a long time. We know everything about each other, and I&rsquo;m concerned my mates won&rsquo;t take my role seriously.<br /></strong><br />First of all, it&rsquo;s useful to recognise you may not know these people as well as you think you do, and they don&rsquo;t know you as well as they think. In the workplace we tend to fall into a particular role, even when we socialise. If you have a particular level of expertise in an area you may become known for that, which may not reflect how you see yourself outside the workplace. The nature of your job reflects how people view you, and as a manager you need to get beyond that.<br /><br />So a useful course of action is to do a team building exercise to help people get to know each other better. I&rsquo;m not talking about going on a paint-balling jolly, but something that sets specific objectives about what you want to achieve and find out about each other. In these scenarios, tools like personality tests are used to help teams function more effectively by bringing out a more fundamental understanding of people. The unspoken agenda for you would also be that the team can see you presenting yourself as a manager, how you will work as their manager, and how you are taking their responsibilities &ndash; and them &ndash; seriously. <br /><br />You&rsquo;ll also be getting a wider view of who they are, and what their preferences and goals are. By getting to know them in a more fundamental way, you can also avoid the serious temptation to play favourites based on the way your relationships in the team have previously been built up.<br /><br />You also shouldn&rsquo;t forget to keep developing yourself. Explore what opportunities your company will offer for things like developmental coaching, looking specifically at how that can be focussed on your needs a new manager.<br />www.opp.eu.com