Your First Day as a Manager at a New Company | No BS Management Advice

It’s your first day as a manager at a new job! Here are a few things you can do.

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This one isn't necessarily, for a new manager. It's for a new manager walking into a new organization. You've inherited a team of people. These folks are wondering who it is that's going to be taken over and what it's like to be like for them, you have to understand that component to it as you walk into the new organization.
So, let's start off with you've spoken to your boss, in advance, and have an idea of what your calendar is going to be like with he or she on your first day and with anyone else. Perhaps you have access to your calendar remotely so that you have a sense of who's plugged themselves in.
So, with that conceded, and this is your first real work day, not the onboarding day, the benefits day, stuff along those lines, the first thing is you walk in, and the folks that you've met with during your interviews, say, "hi," to them, Connect with them. The folks that you haven't met with yet, connect with them, too. It makes a world of difference to folks because they have a chance to see you with a smile on your face, knowing full well that may be the last day they ever see a smile on your face.
As you talk with them, just ask some friendly questions. Who you are, what do you do. Do stuff to try and connect with them and build the initial rapport. Listen to what they say, ask one, maybe two follow up questions in total. That's really it. Because this is just the friendly first day.
In doing so, you want to have that positive attitude for an entire day. You want to have the twinkle in your eyes, a smile on your face, you want to be "the friendly person." You want to start talking with people about what your predecessor did well and what they could have done differently. Notice, I didn't say badly; what they could have done differently.
Listen to their complaints and what their issues are. Ask them about the firm and what the group does well, who the leaders are, and get a sense of that. Get friendly with people outside the group and find out and learn who, in the past, who on your inherited team, are the leaders and the best performers. It doesn't mean that you ignore the others. You may choose to get them to step up in the game, you may start pushing them out the door after you've had a chance to work with them for a while.
The last thing is, see if you can inject yourself into some tough situations if any materialize. It starts off with asking good questions that helps elicit information. Before you make a decision, especially on the first day when you know next to nothing, make sure you ask this very important question.
What do you think? What do you think is best in order to be done? Then, from there follow up with why is that?


Jeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked in recruiting for what seems like one hundred years. He is the head coach for He is the host of “The No BS Coaching Advice Podcast,” and “No BS Job Search Advice.”

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