One of my most popular stories on iTWire in the last few years is Lessons for a new IT Manager where I distil things I’ve had to learn over the years. There are many good people – be it in within technology or any other field at all – who are competent, skilful, trustworthy and reliable.
By virtue of their performance, and the confidence the business has in them, they find themselves elevated to new and lofty roles where they are no longer “on the tools” but directing those who are.
Yet, despite the obvious compliment of how much confidence the business has in them people management and leadership are an entirely different set of skills to, well, doing stuff.
The Peter Principle wryly notes people are promoted to their level of incompetence. The truth behind this is people are promoted based on their performance in the role they currently have and not necessarily the intended role.
It doesn’t have to be this way. With some self-reflection, some gumption and drive, good managers can be made.
I give my tips here, but let me give a spoiler: it boils down to communication. You can’t be a leader who doesn’t talk to your team and your stakeholders.