Situation: Tom was just promoted to a managerial position, and he is concerned about the fact that he has never managed people before. Lucy is trying to reassure Tom that he will be doing fine in the new position.
Tom: I have really good news today. Oh! I am so happy.
Lucy: What is your good news, Tom?
Tom: I got a promotion today. You are looking at the new supervisor of the Marketing department.
Lucy: Wow, this is great news! I am so glad for you. So, you will start your new job this coming Monday?
Tom: No, I need to finish my current projects in the Sales department before I move over to Marketing. I probably will start my new job a week from Monday.
Lucy: You have a lot of experience with this company. They will be very helpful to you in your new position.
Tom: I know. However, I have never supervised people before. I hope I will be able to cope with all the new responsibilities.
Lucy: You will do fine. You are a natural leader, and you will lead well.
Tom: You think so, Lucy?
Lucy: I know so. You are always good at coaching people. You led your soccer team to victory last year, didn’t you?
Tom: Leading a soccer team and leading a Marketing department are not quite the same.
Lucy: Yes, they are in a way. First, being a supervisor means building a good team where
members work well with each other, right?
Tom: Right. If members of a team do not understand their own tasks as well as the tasks of their
teammates, it will be chaos.
Lucy: Second, a supervisor needs to identify his employees’ working habits and the job requirements in order to build a better work environment, right?
Tom: Yes. In order for me to improve my employees’ performance, I need to understand their working habits and their skills. Then, I can give them a little bit of coaching if the need arises.
Lucy: Third, you need to find out what motivates your employees, right?
Tom: Yes again. Everybody needs to be motivated, either to find a better way of doing one’s job or putting in extra effort to perform better.
Lucy: Things will not always run smoothly. There will be problem employees. So, fourth, you need to know how to coach, or how to counsel, or even how to discipline, right?
Tom: Right. This is the worst part of being a supervisor. You need to be strong enough to cope with problem employees, to be wise enough to counsel them, and even be “mean” enough to discipline them.
Lucy: Things will change, and your department needs to be able to adapt to changes, right?
Tom: Yes, technological changes happen everyday. I need to get my employees ready for changes as well as to reinforce the need for change sometimes.
Lucy: And if you come up with new ideas, you need to be able to “sell” your ideas to your boss and your employees, right?
Tom: There is no need to come up with new ideas if you cannot convince people of their value.
Lucy: You need to set yourself out as an example for your employees. Therefore, you should have a good understanding of your responsibilities, work hard and work well with others, be alert of changes, and last but not least, understand the values and goals of your company.
Tom: If I want to lead, then I need to prove that I am a good leader.
Lucy: Those are the things that you need to do in your new position. Even though they are not exactly the same as coaching a soccer team, you will do fine. All you need to do is change your eadership style a little bit in this new environment.
Tom: Thanks for the note of confidence, Lucy.
Lucy: You are welcome, Tom.