From Buddy to Boss

The Weekly Report – May 2, 2022
Transitioning from managing oneself to managing others.

A week ago, Abbey Hellickson, one of our top talent and leadership development experts, presented a manufacturing workshop on Investing in Your People to Create Leaders at All Levels. It was an outstanding and in-demand topic. Sixty-two manufacturers from around the state joined the event virtually, which is a new record for Enterprise Minnesota manufacturing workshops.

One topic of particular interest to attending manufacturers was how to navigate expectations and workload changes as employees progress into positions of leadership within a company.

Abbey shared that a general Leadership Pipeline for companies starts with ‘Managing Self’ and progresses to ‘Managing Others,’ then ‘Functional/Department Manager,’ and finally ‘Business Leader.’

“As you think about going up the levels, the lower levels are ’doing’ a lot. This level is very task oriented, getting a lot of work completed. As we continue to go up, it’s less doing and more of that strategic thinking and higher-level thought process,” Abbey said.

She noted that in her work with clients that one of the most challenging transitions in this progression is the first one, from managing yourself to managing others.

“When we level up in that first transition, we think about this as our buddy to boss transition. So now the worker is responsible to still do work, but now is also responsible for a team of other people. They have to balance getting their own work done and now need to ensure that they are getting work done through others as well.

“One thing to think about are the skills necessary for these new leaders,” she said. “These can include coaching others on technical skills, time management and assigning jobs and tasks, but also accountability.

“Accountability is one of the hardest skill sets for these new leaders. Because it’s kind of scary, and maybe that new leader is holding someone accountable that they were friends with yesterday. Ensuring that they have the skill sets to have the accountability conversations. To set clear expectations and then follow up. Those are things we really want to think about for these new leaders. Have we defined the skill sets that our leaders at this level need to be successful?”

I’m sure many readers can relate to that first transition and how challenging it can sometimes be, but also how valuable for the individual and the larger organization when the “level up” is a successful transition.

As your organization looks to promote employees, Abbey recommends taking the time to identify the skills those positions require and how to support the development of your employees as they progress. Because, as Abbey noted in the talent lifecycle, employee development leads to employee retention.

I invite you to learn more about our talent and leadership development services on our website. Also, look for the feature on Leading Daily for Results in the upcoming issue of Enterprise Minnesota® magazine due out May 12th.

Learn more about our Talent & Leadership Development services.

Events Calendar

May 3 – State of Manufacturing: Thief River Falls
Open to all manufacturers and supporters of manufacturing. In-person at Northland Community & Technical College.

May 10 – State of Manufacturing: Grand Rapids
Open to all manufacturers and supporters of manufacturing. In-person at Rapids Brewing Company.

May 19 – Profiting from Revenue Growth
Strategy & revenue growth workshop. Exclusive to manufacturers. Online via Zoom

May 25 – A Model for Manufacturing Excellence Using ISO 9001
ISO 9001:2015 manufacturing workshop. Exclusive to manufacturers. In-person in Sartell.

Industry News

More Minnesota inmates to be eligible for federal aid for college classes
May 1, West Central Tribune/Pioneer Press

Duluth receives $1.1 million to help workers land better jobs
April 28, Duluth News Tribune

Faribault Mill expands with new CEO, cotton category
April 28, Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal

Manufacturers optimistic about year ahead
April 28, Mankato Free Press

Minnesota set to get first vinyl-record pressing facility
April 25, Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal

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