Being promoted can be a tough proposition

CONGRATULATIONS, , , you finally received that promotion you have been looking for , , , smooth sailing ahead – right !!

Hopefully when you get promoted it will be smooth sailing and lots of opportunity ahead. But, it could also be a big challenge for you, , , especially if your promotion means you will be managing some of your peers.

Managing peers can be a huge challenge. When I was with IBM many years ago, they had a policy of moving you to another city when you got promoted because they understood how difficult it is to manage your peers.

That’s right, at the end of the week you are big buddies with everyone you work with but come next week when you start your newly assigned management role, things are going to be different.

Very Different !!!

The dynamics change drastically and they change immediately when you become the manager after being one of the employees. Whether you think so or not, your former buddies you worked alongside view you differently now. You are management, , , not “one of the guys”.

Most will be more cautious around you now, some may wonder why you got the job and what makes you qualified, and one or two might even be jealous that you got the promotion instead of them. Regardless of how they see the situation, they will react differently to you from now on, , , because you are the manager.

Now that you have the job, you have to be careful and avoid micro managing your employees. Most of us in IT are high detail and we like doing things “our way”. You may have gotten the Programming Manager position because you were the best programmer.

As the senior programmer, you probably had your way of doing things and was very effective. As manager, your tendency will be to require all programmers to do things the way you did them. I’m not saying this will be wrong but you need to have good reasoning when you make changes in the way things are being done, , , especially if the team is already effective.

You had credibility as a programmer, but you don’t have it as the manager, , , you must earn your management credibility. You do this by delivering results and in treating your employees and clients with respect.


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