- Paperback: 448 pages
- Publisher: Harvard Business School Press; 2nd Revised edition edition (1 May 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1591391822
- ISBN-13: 978-1591391821
- Product Dimensions: 3.8 x 15.9 x 23.5 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 380,297 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- See Complete Table of Contents
Becoming a Manager: How New Managers Master the Challenges of Leadership Paperback – 1 May 2003
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"Becoming a Manager is a must-read guide for companies that want to maximize the success of their future leaders."
About the Author
Linda A. Hill is the Wallace Brett Donham Professor of Business Administration in the Organizational Behavior Area at the Harvard Business School.
She is faculty chair, Leadership Initiative, and faculty chair, the Young Presidents’ Organization Presidents’ Seminar.
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Top Customer Reviews
You have to take first time managers through some fundamental basics - their new personal identity (the period of growth in their first 12 months and the stresses/emotions of it all) and the weight of expectations from everywhere, examining the key management competencies and finally how to understand about the art of managing people and building relationships.
This information will help them in the transition or transformation (like a caterpillar to a butterfly!).
A really great book adding a new dimension to anyone interested in (first time) management development.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The value of this book -- to me -- was not that it revealed anything new (most managers would instinctively know what the issues are when working with a team). What it did for me was to give me assurance that the trials and tribulations that I've gone through (some of which are daily occurances) are normal. That told me that I AM NOT ALONE! -- for management is a lonely business.
This book took me sometime to finish (440 over pages) but a very readable book. Not overly academic. I particularly liked the section on "Is Management Really for Me?".
1) 80% of the time people reach out to you as their manager is for a 'negative' reason. Do not be a Prima Donna and let it effect your outside reaction. Be like a duck, calm and serene on outside and paddle like hell underneath.
2) Learning is a two-way street. Your manager also learns from you. Exchanging candid feedback is like a protected left turn, however, where your manager always has prerogative.
3) First line manager has significant higher number of pulls - one from upper chain of management, another from multiple personalities who are deeply embedded into delivery.
4) Managing people is often being able to deal with 'half-truths'.
5) When top individual performers become manager, it is often 'heap reversal'. Organization takes a superstar from the top of the heap, and puts her at the bottom of another. This indeed causes the big surprise.
6) Never manage out of fear.
7) Delegation is one of the toughest part to figure out. The rope extended could be too high, where people feel left out and on their own; or too low where managed feel trampled by micro-decisions. 'Supportive Autonomy' - to work as coach where needed is one good model to tune the delegation.
8) Successful career in management is like climbing a ladder - skipped rungs almost always create a safety hazard.
9) Formal authority is a limited source of power.
10) Managing is about
i) Establishing Direction = [Develop a vision for future] + [Craft Strategies to achieve the vision]
Tools needed for the above -
a) Inductive Reasoning
b) Multidimensional Thinking
c) Risk Taking
d) Ability to make sense of complex and ambiguous data
ii) Aligning People = [Communicating vision and strategies through words and deeds]
Tools needed for the above -
b) Abilities to build credibility and communicate with diverse constituencies
c) Willingness & Ability to empower
iii) Motivate & Inspire = [Energizing people to overcome Political, Bureaucratic & Resource barriers]
Tools needed for the above -
a) Abilities to exercise power & influence to change behavior
b) Attitudes & Values of diverse constituency
c) Managing Performance & Coaching Talents
The original edition is based on interviews with 19 new managers and their thoughts on becoming a manager. As such, it was an interesting, but somewhat hard going (sentences and paragraphs are wordy), read. Although the 19 managers are all from customer service or sales, their stories translate well to other professions.
This latest edition adds chapters on Exercising Influence Without Formal Authority, Building an Effective Team, and Learning For A Lifetime. I found the chapter on teams a little light in it's description of process management. However, it's these chapters and in particular the one on influence, that makes this book much more useful for the new manager than the first edition. Every manager should use Hill's description of sources of personal and positional power to improve their influencing.
By Hill's own admission, she has become far more prescriptive in the latest edition and this is a real benefit for readers. For instance, in the most recent chapters, Hill asks questions that will enable the manager to apply the key concepts being covered. But, these "how to"s are hard to find.
If you are a big picture person, or someone who likes to get plenty of "how to" action type suggestions, then this book is not for you. However, if you are someone who always wants to know the reason "why?" something works or doesn't work, you will enjoy this book.
Bob Selden, author of What To Do When You Become The Boss: How new managers become successful managers
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