A management role brings a new title and often a higher salary, but it also brings new responsibilities. How can you tell if you’re management material?
Executives look for certain traits and qualities when they’re reviewing candidates for a management position. Here are eight tips to give you the leg up as you look toward a role in management.
1. Model yourself after other managers and leaders. Look for managers, supervisors, and leaders in your workplace who are well-liked and respected. Observe how they interact with others, and duplicate their actions. They’re admired for a reason, so if you follow in their footsteps chances are, you’ll be favored too.
2. Display a solid work ethic. When you’re looking to move into another position, make sure you continue to fulfill your current position’s responsibilities. If you start slacking off on your duties when a higher position catches your eye, supervisors will take notice and may think you’ll demonstrate the same work ethic in a new role. Prove you’re a hard worker, and you’ll be recognized for your commitment and dependability. When you give 110% to your tasks, you’ll stand out and have the edge over equally qualified candidates.
3. Volunteer for extra work. Once you’ve completed all of your tasks, offer to take on a new task or help a co-worker complete a project. Taking on new responsibilities will help you familiarize yourself with other operations you may oversee as a manager. Then you’ll be able to add your new capabilities to your résumé.
4. Excel at working with others. Learn to play a variety of roles on your team, because there will be different times when you need to be a leader, participant, and supporter. As a coach, take the lead and guide others when they need assistance. As a team player, be cooperative and considerate of others without trying to overrule them. And as the team cheerleader, encourage and praise others for their efforts.
5. Keep your skills competitive. Take advantage of every opportunity to improve your skills. Participate in leadership classes, because as a manager you’ll need to know how to effectively lead. Also, enroll in training courses and seminars that cover topics related to your field. With a wider knowledge base and higher skill level, you’ll be a prime candidate for management positions.
6. Share your ambitions with your boss. Talk to your supervisor and let him or her know you’re interested in moving into a management position. Tell them why you think you’re ready to take the next step in your career, and ask for their help, suggestions, or feedback. Your supervisor can help you develop the necessary skills to become an effective manager and can act as a mentor during your career move. If you’re looking to move up within the company, you’ll probably need your boss’s approval anyway, so it’s best to get their support in advance.
7. Practice your management skills. Work on increasing your strengths and turning your weaknesses into strengths. Volunteer for an organization or civic group within your community so you can gain experience managing a small group. Make sure to practice the skills you’ll need as a manager, such as communication, scheduling projects, creating timelines, allocating resources, and budgeting funds.
8. Dress the part. For any manager to be taken seriously, they have to dress appropriately. Show the hiring manager and other executives that you can professionally represent the company by dressing the part. If you don’t make the right impression through your appearance, you might be passed up for the job for someone with equal qualifications with a more professional look. Remember, dress for the job you want, not the job you have.
If it’s time to take the next step in your career and move into a management position, make sure that you are prepared to do so. Update your skills, put your experience to practice, and demonstrate your qualifications before you make the jump. Put yourself ahead of the other candidates and land the promotion you’re after by getting yourself ready for the job now.