Factors Affecting a Manager - Managing the Manager

What are the different challenges faced by the newly promoted manager?

During this transition phase from executive to manager, the newly promoted manager has to face many challenges. Some of the basic challenges faced are -

  • Managing Friends
  • Managing Non-allies and
  • Managing the senior members of the team

Managing Friends

In friendship it is the most common trend that people usually overlap personal issues with the professional issues. On the basis of this, the newly promoted managers tend to give advice to their friends with regard to the problems that are beyond the boundaries of the profession.

The advice given is by treating the person as a friend but it is the fact that the manager is in higher position compared to his friend in the relationship. By advising the friend (now the subordinate) may seems like the friend is being judged by the newly promoted manager.

When advises are given with respect to the job, for instance, if any negative feedback is been given, it may make the friend feel that the perception of the manager on the friend has changed and the manager perceives the friend in negative terms. This dilemma hampers the company and their friendship as well.

Managing Friends

This challenge is faced by maintaining a proper relation between the goals and the feedback. It is the responsibility of the newly promoted manager to set the goals properly in such a manner that the goals are accepted by the subordinates also, including the friends who perceive the manager wrongly. The friend’s achievements are measured on the basis of their achieving their goals.

It is been stated by many psychologists and consultants that whenever there is a change in the hierarchy within the team, then the friendship within the team should be kept aside.

When friendship is given more importance than the manager –subordinate relation, it becomes quite difficult for the manager to give directions and maintain the discipline in the team. Because the relation of friendship is always stays on the ground that both of them agree to each other.

Just change in the title of the designation of one of the friends, may tend change drastically the perceptions and emotions. It is considered that before the promotion friendship seems to be very sophisticated but the involvement of business and money makes friendship sophisticated to problems and challenges.


When seen from the other side of the coin, the relationship of friendship always results in yielding positive results for both of them. It implies that friendship does not make the relations complicated.

One more challenge for the newly promoted manager is to handle the weaknesses of the friends and other team members who were colleagues earlier. Here it is very crucial for the manager to solve the problem, approach them and discuss the problems by not spoiling the relationship.

These situations can be dealt by the manager by taking the instances and throwing more emphasis on the job and required performance rather than talking about the person.


Consider an example of the manager sharing the feedback with his friend who is a subordinate. Here the manager want to say “Harry, what are the complaints you have against the finance department with respect to demands of the new customers? You seem to over react and thus making the perception of the team bad on other departments”.


Instead a manager can say that “Harry, we will plan a meeting with John, from the finance department and discuss about the demands of the new customers and can come out with a decision accepted by all of us and close the business”.

The second one sounds better than the first one as the manager has avoided using if the subjective words which may tend to make Harry defensive and made harry agree for a conversation. The conversation of the manager emphasised more on the positive aspects which made Harry to think towards the objective and accept the feedback of the manager.

Managing Non-allies

Even there are people in the team who feel that they themselves or somebody else would have been the manager rather than the current manager. Managing such kind of people is a major challenge for the newly promoted manager.

They do not accept the fact that the person deserves a promotion. It is the responsibility of the manager to do not let people think on these lines because the manager has been promoted only when the senior management feels that he is the suitable performance by examining his performance and other achievements.

Managing Non-allies

It is the manager who needs to reduce these kind of negative perceptions about himself/herself. But this cannot be done in a short period of time. The manager needs to be more patient as this happens over a long period of time.

When the manager manages the team by following and practicing the fundamentals strictly and strongly, the non-allies people can be turned to great allies people. To the surprise of the manager, the most tough team members turn as the best supportive team members.

Managing Senior Members

Managing Senior Members

The newly promoted managers are not left by the senior members also even they tend to challenge the newly promoted managers. A feeling of fear is experienced by the newly promoted manager in managing the senior and most experienced executives. This may happen because managers feel that the senior experienced executives are more capable than the managers themselves.

It is a known fact that an executive when promoted as a manager does not imply that manager has sufficient skills and practice. This fact the manager should consider realistic. It is not good on the part of the manager to completely avoid these kinds of people, or completely take into control.

Separate goals need to be set to gain the trust of these senior executives. Initially the manager has to resolve if any personal issues with these senior and most experienced executives at the earliest.

By doing so the manager can gain respect in view of the senior executives and this helps the manager in understanding and utilizing the hidden talents of these experienced executives. This leads to increased chances of growth and development for the manager and also the start performers of the team.

These most experienced executives are a great valuable asset to the team. All the problems and politics can be avoided by referring them in any of the team decision being taken. This enables to shower a positive insight about the manager.

It is one of most important responsibilities of the managers to maximize the talent of the team members irrespective of their experience. The manager should guide and train the executives in developing better habits and help them in any problems being faced. This can be achieved by the manager by analyzing the pros and cons of each of the team member and work on them.

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