Career Smarts: Managing A Team More Experienced Than You!

AUTHENTIC LEADERSHIP-PROFOUNDBy Marcia Zidle, Featured Contributor

MANY YEARS AGO I coached Kevin, a young manager who had just taken the reins of the facilities department of a major university. At his first staff meeting with his much senior supervisors, he said:

 As your manager, I’m here to help you succeed. You already know the goals of our department – to make sure everything works on campus – and you certainly know your jobs very well. My job is to remove obstacles that keep you from succeeding. Then, it’s just you, your staff and the goal line.”

What Sort of Obstacles Was Kevin Referring To?

Things like red tape, office politics, hierarchical nonsense, territorial disputes and so on. Kevin’s message left three critical impressions on his staff:

  • Everyone knew that the usual complaints and excuses (Mary didn’t call back or I couldn’t get the information) wouldn’t fly.
  • Everyone knew they had a powerful advocate for doing whatever it takes to meet their goals and serve their customers (and on a large campus there were many customers.)
  • Everyone understood that the ‘enemy’ was their competitors – the other educational institutions in the area – not ‘those horrible people in accounting.’ The focus was on how we can make this university a super institution.

Smart Moves Questions

  • Are you an absentee manager or one who is an obstacle remover?
  • Do you stand back from the action assuming you can’t change things?
  • Or do you do whatever it takes to help your people reach the goal line?
  • What obstacles are getting in the way of your people doing their job?
  • What can you do right now to change that?

Have you been in Kevin’s shoes – managing people who were more experienced or senior than you? How did you handle the situation? What are some lessons learned you can pass on to the readers?

Marcia Zidle, a Board Certified Coach, Business Management Consultant and Keynote Speaker, guides entrepreneurial ventures, small to medium size enterprises and NGO’s to grow their organizations AND make a difference in their world. Sign up or Marcia’s monthly newsletter “Authentic Leadership” with added insights, inspiration and intelligence to build Profound Performance.

Did You Know That a New Kind of SMARTS is Needed? 
“75% of leaders are derailed for reasons related to emotional competencies, including inability to handle people problems, unsatisfactory team leadership during times of difficulty or conflict; or inability to adapt to change or elicit trust.” – Center for Creative Leadership. Do you want to boost your emotional, social or leadership intelligence? As the Smart Moves Coach, let me help you do it!

Marcia Zidle
Marcia Zidle, The Smart Moves Coach, is a national known board certified coach and keynote leadership speaker who guides organizations that are planning, or in the midst of, ambitious growth and change. As a career strategist, she works with professionals, managers and executives who want to build • shape • brand • change • vitalize their careers. She’s been selected by LinkedIn’s ProFinder as one of the best coaches for 2016!Her clients range from private owned businesses to mid-market companies to professional service firms to NGO’s. With 25 years of management, business consulting and international experience, she brings an expertise in executive and team leadership; employee engagement and innovation; personal and organization change; career building and development; emotional and social intelligence. Your Future Starts Now With Marcia!