Being good at your job seems a natural strategy for career advancement and it’s true that high-performing employees are frequently promoted. Getting a supervisory role, however, changes everything.
There is great demand these days for new leaders to join the ranks of management. A significant portion of the management population is retiring and needs to be replaced. But leading others requires a completely different approach – especially in this period of rapid and disruptive change – and without one, the transition to a frontline role can be challenging.
“It’s a different set of skills from when you’re actually doing the job as compared to when you are responsible for others doing the job,” says Laura Boyd-Brown, facilitator for the Schulich Executive Education Centre’s Certificate in Leadership Skills for Supervisors and Frontline Managers. The key says Boyd-Brown is to develop a different, progressive mindset or what she calls “a management mindset”.
The initial three days of this five-day certificate program, one of SEEC’s most popular, look at “understanding of self” using a Myers-Briggs tool to assess a new manager’s strengths and non-strengths. “It gives people a chance to look at how others might see us and know when to adjust,” she says. Participants learn to develop techniques to engage their staff in setting stretch-goals, taking responsibility for their own performance, and how to bond with staff, while maintaining a professional relationship. They also learn how to deal with poor performers who don’t respond to coaching best-practices. And participants will create customized development plans for the various members of their team that they can implement right away.
In the final two days of the program, participants learn about their workforce make-up: managing generations, problem solving, decisions and teams, management ethics – their importance in the workplace of today, resolving disagreements or “friction” and how to provide constructive performance feedback.
The benefits of learning a set of management skills are more satisfaction and less stress, better relationships with staff and more fun, says Boyd-Brown. “Your staff will see you as a team player, an individual who has their backs and best interests at heart.”
The program is delivered in the virtual classroom using all the functionality of online technology to engage participants. “Even though it’s virtual, it’s very interactive,” says Boyd-Brown.
The Certificate in Leadership Skills for Supervisors and Frontline Managers (starting April 26) is a five-day program delivered in the virtual classroom. For more information and to register, visit the program web page.