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What to Do When You Become the Boss: How New Managers Become Successful Managers [Paperback]

Bob Selden
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
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Book Description

15 Nov 2007

Do you know all the "ins" and "outs" of managing?

Make a success of your career as a manager. This is your complete "How to" for managing your boss, your people, yourself. You will refer to this book again and again as you progress through your career.

You will discover how to:

- Become an effective leader, recognized throughout the organization

- Distribute your time appropriately between the three essential managerial role elements of leading, managing and operating

- Manage your boss - one of the most important of your work relationships

- Select your new boss - if you happen to be changing roles or organizations

- Manage the performance of your team including setting and maintaining standards, coaching, motivating and appraising performance

- Select the best person for the job with a process that is 4 times more effective than traditional selection processes

- Delegate, make more effective decisions, run motivating team meetings - there are even chapters on "How to manage your emails" and "How to build your image"

"Nothing is more practical than a good theory." Kurt Lewin's quote sums up this book and Bob's ability to address the realities of managing people in changing environments. In each chapter he demonstrates a rare gift of being able to translate conceptual frameworks into practical processes and actions which managers can build into their daily work routines. The rich array of case studies, many drawn from Bob's own experience as a line manager, add colour and weight to this comprehensive "must read" user's guide for new and not so new managers.

- Humphrey Armstrong, Organizational Psychologist, Lifelong Learning Systems, Sydney, Australia The messages in this best selling book have shown thousands of managers, particularly new managers, a better way of managing. Find out for yourself.

Frequently Bought Together

What to Do When You Become the Boss: How New Managers Become Successful Managers + The New Manager's Handbook: 24 Lessons for Mastering Your New Role (McGraw-Hill Professional Education Series)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Outskirts Press (15 Nov 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1432714287
  • ISBN-13: 978-1432714284
  • Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 15.3 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 217,481 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

Bob Selden is a student of behaviour. He believes that the words and language we use not only impact our relationships with others, but also the way in which we behave. Recent research tends to support this belief. For example, studies at the Universities of Heidelberg, Neuchatel and Zurich (2007) show that when young male drivers hear male type words (such as "tough" and "rough") they automatically increase their speed, whilst hearing female type words (such as "pink" and "lipstick") leads to a reduction in their speed.

Likewise, can the words a manager uses impact both his or her people relationships and behaviour? His book "What To Do When You Become The Boss" enables Bob to illustrate how this concept can help managers improve both their effectiveness and relationships with critical stakeholders. It also provides the opportunity for Bob to pass on many of the management models, theories and practical tips that he has picked up over a long and varied management career.

Bob Selden survived his first new manager's role in banking to eventually develop into a senior manager responsible for the career development of hundreds of other managers. During this growing process, and later as an organisational development consultant, trainer and coach, he learnt what works and what doesn't work when managing others. "What To Do When You Become The Boss" is the result of his learning which he is determined to pass on to help other new managers during their initial growth spurt.

Bob is an Australian who until recently, lived in Liestal, Switzerland with his wife Anita, a senior manager in a large multinational organisation. As well as consulting to various organisations on 5 continents, he coaches on the Mobilizing People program at the International Institute for Management Development in Lausanne, Switzerland. Bob also facilitates on programs such as the Middle Manager Development program at the Australian Graduate School of Management in Sydney, Australia.

Product Description


This is a general management and leadership text containing a range of material based on tried and tested theory, presented in an easily accessible format. --Chartered Institute of Management, June, 2009.

With well laid out chapters it is an easy book to dip in and out of, especially should one wish to quickly reference a particular management situation they find themselves in. -- British Computer Society, Feb, 2009.

One of the best parts about this book is that it is not written in standard management speak. Bob uses plain language to ensure that all of the tidbits, advice, and kernels of wisdom can be absorbed. -- Great New Management Books That Are A Must Read, Feb, 2008.

Not only is this book a bit of a 'New Boss's Bible', it lures you in through your own particular learning style and meets you where you will derive the most value. -- G. Michelli, UK., Feb, 2008

Each substantive chapter is approximately ten pages long - short enough to read during lunch break, and well organized enough to help readers implement the ideas discussed. -- Armchair Reviewer, Feb, 2008. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Book Description

At last, a straightforward guide to help fill the people management learning gap for new managers

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
There are thousands of books on management, many of which offer a simple formula for success as a manager. Yet two things remain true: (1) a significant proportion of employees do not think their manager is competent in leadership or interpersonal skills, and (2) most managers are still appointed for their technical or operational skills rather than their ability to manage other people.
There is no simple formula for being successful as a manager. Managing other people well involves insight, empathy and a measure of boldness. Managers need to make judgements about complex matters and strike the "right" balance between tasks, business goals and care for people. It is not a skill that is natural for most people; it has to be learned, and not in the same way that technical skills are learned.
Bob Selden's book, What to do when you become the boss, does not fall into the "simple formula" category. But, as its title might suggest, it offers a straightforward pathway to competence as a manager. It provides a solid treatment of the major aspects of the management role. It addresses cognitive skills (related to the tasks that managers carry out, such as setting standards and goals, selecting people, running meetings and appraising performance) and emotional skills (interpersonal skills such as establishing relationships, motivating and influencing), and underpins this with values (respect for others and integrity).
This is primarily a book for the practising manager who wants to learn the management craft, not an academic text. It has been written with a strong consideration of different learning styles, and this is made explicit at the outset. Whether you consider yourself to be an activist, a reflector, a theorist or a pragmatist, this book caters convincingly to your style.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Refreshing Change from the Traditional 10 April 2008
What a refreshing joy it was to read Bob Selden's wonderfully practical book which at last takes management out of the 19th century Fayol / Taylor approach and shows us how management really works in the 21st century. What's the big difference? Recognizing people management today is all about managing "24/7 human beings", not "9-5 work robots".

For too long managers have tried to push square pegs into round holes - fitting emotional beings into inanimate systems. When they don't fit, find one that does. 19th century workers had no choice but to accept whatever they were told. Today's workers make their own decisions about life and work.

Selden's book drips with experience, with liberal use of humane words and phrases like discuss, agree, share, praise, involve, enjoyment, appreciation, frequent and immediate feedback, recognition, thanks and - dare I mention it - feelings. He doesn't flinch however from the tough bits and gives sage-like advice on how to sack an unsatisfactory worker.

Selden also realizes that a good management book is a tool for finding answers when required. Selden respects our differences. In his categorization of managers (readers), I am largely an activist and so I liked being directed to the sections I should read first.

Selden echoes Ken Blanchard's famous saying "when did you last catch an employee doing something right?" with a refreshing emphasis on building on peoples' strengths. But he also emphasizes the need for praise to be genuine.

"What to do when you become the boss" will be welcomed by the emerging scene of female managers who instinctively apply emotional intelligence principles and by the x and y generation young leaders. Older managers who are being dragged kicking and screaming into the 21st century of people management will find Selden's book to be the ideal secret reading under the bedcovers.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At last a resource packed with practical help 10 Sep 2010
I've waded through of self-help books. They usually make the reader stagger through pages and pages of padding to find one small gem of an idea that may be relevant. This book is different. Its packed full of practical help from the first page. At last a really valuable resource presented in a friendly manner from someone who has obviously been there.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Practical Skills for Managers 10 Oct 2010
This book is a great tool box for new and seasoned managers alike. For new managers, it takes you through all the things you need to take care of when it comes to managing people and tells you how to do it in a hands-on, practical way.

For seasoned managers, the book can be a handy reference tool, e.g. when a situation comes up you have not encountered for a while or when you want to prepare yourself for e.g. a performance review with your people.

The book is very complete and easy to access and read.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
There are many books aimed at first-time managers. What makes this one different is that it is not only about the classical managing a team topics, it covers topics rarely seem elsewhere. It is a complete guide that covers many different perspectives involved in the manager's job< Take the provocative "How to manage your boss" or the even more provocative "How to select your new boss" for instance. Written in a concise and down-to-earth manner, this book discusses:

- Leading vs Managing (what does it take to become an effective manager)
- Managing your team (8 chapters on all the must-have topics)
- Managing upwards & sideways (3 chapters packed with useful advice on influencing others)
- Managing your meetings (including group dynamics for decision making)
- Managing yourself (delegation, e-mail, image, etc.)

It is a very useful tool that brings effective ideas to deal with all the range of issues a new manager might face. Instead of reading 3 or 4 books or keeping a large handbook at hand, get this one and it will provide you with much of the best advice you can get in the market.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Too basic
Content is ok but as a new manager I even found it to be too basic and not enough on the specific tips.
Published 5 months ago by Tomas Doyle
4.0 out of 5 stars seems good
Bought as a present for someone who recently has become a manager and had a quick flick through. Seems to give practical tips and explains how to act and think about what your... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Mr. A. C. Kaynak
5.0 out of 5 stars Great advice
I liked that book. The advise was sound and practical. I have picked up some things. Loved the last section. Read more
Published on 22 Mar 2012 by Viktar Zaitsau
4.0 out of 5 stars 30 Years too late for me
Oh, I wish Bob had written this book 30 years ago when I first became a manager. I think I eventually became a good manager, but it was trial and error, and every error meant... Read more
Published on 26 Oct 2010 by Tony C-:
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy read while being very helpful
As someone with minimal management experience, I found this book really helpful and easy to read. It provokes you to reflect on your own practices and experiences, and offers... Read more
Published on 11 Sep 2010 by Ms. C. Owen
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best of the year!
Bob Selden's What To Do When You Become The Boss is an exceptional handbook for the new manager. It's comprehensive - covering leading and managing, managing your team, managing... Read more
Published on 10 Aug 2010 by Rick Sidorowicz
5.0 out of 5 stars Where Was This Book When I Was asked to Manage
Where was Bob Selden when I was asked - with no prior experience - to become a supervisor at Raytheon semiconductor several decades ago? Read more
Published on 9 Aug 2010 by Allan Hay
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for new managers
"What to do when you become the boss" is an outstanding reference book to help new managers, and managers in need of a refresher, to succeed by avoiding the 101 pitfalls that... Read more
Published on 7 Aug 2010 by Andrew O'Keeffe
5.0 out of 5 stars Not just for the new boss.
As a business coach, WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU BECOME THE BOSS by Bob Selden, is a book I will reference often. Read more
Published on 3 Aug 2010 by Monty Rainey
5.0 out of 5 stars The best book for Managers
This is one of the few management books that you can actually use and that gets taken off the shelf more than once. Read more
Published on 3 Aug 2010 by P. Pryor
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