Top 10 Management Tips for New Managers

Want to avoid committing common management mistakes? Bright*Star training team provides you great management tips that will define your success in your new role. To get specific insights from our expert facilitator, sign up for our training course on ‘Management Skills for New Managers and Supervisorspersonalpresence

1. Choose respect over love without morphing into the Grand Dictator A new higher level position doesn’t give you automatic permission to order people around and watch their every move – would you have appreciated that in your previous role? On the other hand, as human beings we are often conditioned to seek approval so many new managers experience cognitive dissonance as a desire to be approved interferes with their ability to lead. Your staff are relying on you to be their manager which means that generally you cannot be their friend. Making the tough decisions and being respected by your people are the hallmarks of an effective leader.

2. LEAD by example – Become a Role Model People will always learn what behaviour is acceptable by your actions. Role models in the workplace are often characterised by credibility and have built trust by doing what they say they will do or being upfront if they are not able to keep their promise for any reason. You have probably worked for several different managers over the years so examine what motivated you and just as importantly, what didn’t.

3. Master the Art of Influence A big part of your new role will involve requesting people to complete tasks and projects on your behalf. Clearly explaining content, timeline and why that staff member has been asked to assist with the task increases influence and reduces ambiguity.

4. Compare leadership styles with your predecessor One of the most common mistakes new managers make is changing who they are to fit a pre-determined ‘manager’ mould. One of the reasons you got the job is because of who you are, however possessing a leadership style that differs from your predecessor will mean your staff will need to align with a different set of expectations and preferences. You can’t expect your team to know how these have changed unless you tell them so encourage an open conversation around similarities and differences between leadership styles.

5. Preparation is the key Preparation is the key to success at any level – however tracking projects (who they are assigned to, expected outcomes/dates and their current status) allows everyone to be on the same page and work more effectively as a team. This may be the first time you are responsible for recruiting new team members. Prepare ahead when hiring new staff – hire for team fit, train for skill and ensure you have a comprehensive and planned on-boarding process for when they arrive.

6. Manage your stress Stress may be a part of any new management role for a period of time as you adjust to the extra responsibilities and tasks. It is important that you recognise your own personal signs of stress and stress management tactics that work for you. Don’t be tempted to flag that yoga workout in lieu of spending some catch up time in the office – extra-curricular activities and having good ‘sounding’ people outside of work will help you to get through the busy times and initial learning curve.

7. Understand individual differences and communication style Your role now involves managing a team of people with different styles of working, decision-making and communicating. While your team’s individual styles may not be how you approach your work, if the results are good than you will need to learn to accept these differences. Get to know your team, making an effort to spend time with them both as individuals and a group and this will help inform professional and personal growth plans as well as establish the ground rules of team communication.

8. Organisational Culture Companies all have their own culture and it is essential to understand what is important in your organisation. Spend some time getting a feel for the company environment and mission and remember that by representing the organisation as management everything you say can be perceived as a company statement regardless of its intent.

9. Managing Up In other words, an effective manager knows how to handle and manage their own boss. All levels of the organisation (including your manager) have things to accomplish in order for everyone’s job to be completed successfully so ensure you keep your manager up to date on all projects including the issues. Your manager is there to also provide guidance however you should discuss a preferred communication method with them in order to gain the best results – do they prefer a weekly catch up or emails as the issues arise?

10. Accept that you will make mistakes You cannot possibly know everything the first day your start any new role and management is no different. However it is important to realise that now your mistakes are likely to affect the team. Instead of beating yourself up about it, come clean, rectify where possible and learn from the error in order to improve your leadership skills.


Want to know more? Sign up for our course today

Management Skills for New Managers and Supervisors

  • 7 – 8 Mar, 2016


  • 9 – 10 May, 2016


  • 8 – 9 Aug, 2016


  • 14 – 15 Nov, 2016



My training course experience by Ingrid Le Fevre (Road Safety Coordinator)

I selected Essential Management Skills for EAs and PAs for a professional development course as I wanted to hone up on existing skills and further myself in other areas.

I was able to take good notes from the facilitator and the standout for me was the networking. One of the best things was exchanging business cards with people – you never know when you will be needing those contacts.

However there were lots of other useful topics like time-keeping, list writing, remaining professional at all times and dressing smartly. Oh yes and how it’s important to have time to yourself (I need to re-read over that one I think!).

In terms of the facilitator, Elaine was an excellent professional lady who knew her stuff. She was easy to listen to and made you feel like you have known her for a long time. You were really receiving information from a very experienced professional.

I continue to use these skills today and have on my CV that I am a severe multi-tasker!

When things get a bit quieter in my role, I hope to make some time for me and see what is the next step might be for me and my career development.

How do you solve a problem like…a technical professional

If I am trying to get the bearing off an axle and have a bearing puller it only takes me a few minutes.  If I don’t have a bearing puller it can take me all day (with lots of cursing on the way).  It is all about having the right tools. 
Over the past 40 years I have worked closely with technical managers who are looking to improve the way their teams operate or are struggling to handle a challenging performance problem.  In many cases the results fall short simply because the manager didn’t have the right tools. 
People Management Skills for Technical Professionals is designed to provide tools for managing behaviour and dealing with issues.  It explains the psychology of why people behave the way they do and provides practical actions that can help a manager to achieve maximum results for the least amount of effort.  As one manager commented “Most courses I have been on tell me what I should be doing but this is the first one that helped me to understand why and taught me how to do it.”
(And don’t ask me how I know about getting bearings off axles – without a bearing puller!)

Minute Writing. Still a relevant skill for PAs?

How many meetings do you attend every week? Decisions resulting from these talks can involve huge investments for your company or influence the future of employees.

That’s why managers still consider accurate minute writing as an essential skill for the perfect PA. What do you do if you are asked to take minutes at one of those big meeting? We had a chat with Natalie Baker, former PA and EA and experienced facilitator of the successful: “Minute Writing Masterclass.”


Natalie, what would you say is the most difficult challenge PAs face when taking minutes?

I hear complaints from PAs daily about their struggle to get the gist of what is being said in a meeting.  Most PAs dread taking minutes and try to outsource it if possible.  The master class addresses myths around the roles and responsibilities to empower the PA to succeed.”


What would you say is the most difficult challenge Managers face in meetings?

I am yet to find a manager who is not worn down by ‘back to back meetings’ – we are time poor in our modern world.  There are subtle ways in which a PA can add tremendous value to meetings, and lift productivity levels.  In our master class, we discuss pros and cons of a variety of templates, and introduce more effective ways of working.”


Is minute writing still a relevant skill in today’s modern office which is surrounded by technology?

Most definitely.  There is a legal component to minutes, and most PAs are still expected to take minutes for a variety of meetings.  Twenty years ago, the focus was on pitmans shorthand but this is no longer a prerequisite. We discuss technology options in the course.”


Can you mention some tips or tricks to prepare smarter minutes?

I think it is useful to do an audit once a year to see if the process is serving you and the team effectively.  Minutes are there to document facts and action items, and should not be a long-winded stressful process.  The problem is often the ‘meeting process’ and less to do with scribing of minutes.  We explore some of the meeting dynamics in our course too.”


How does your Minute Writing Masterclass support PAs professional development?

“ I received a call from a PA to say that she found the techniques really useful.  She has also helped the team bring more structure to their weekly meetings, which in turn lifted productivity.”

Learn why you should take notes by hand and visit our website to join Natalie’s course today. Learn best practices to create a professional document and how to select the most important and relevant information to be recorded.

Register now. The Minute Writing Masterclass will give you the skills you need to perform your role at the highest level. The skills you learn are yours to keep!

Guest Blog | Penny Holden: The secret to successfully pulling the strings as an EA/PA?


  • Get things from others
  • Get others to do things
  • Get others to work together

……and get others to help you achieve these three!

Oh, and be recognised as a highly skilled competent individual in your own right (whilst making everyone else look good)!

You understand just how to get around the Manager of Marketing and her ferocious secretary; the finance officer hasn’t delivered his section of the quarterly report but you can draw him gently out and get him to deliver on time, and in between, the GMHR is asking (in her own unique special way) for data that only you have and all by lunchtime!

You’re influencing – one of the most important and sought after skills in today’s workplaces.

And this means…….understanding both your own and others communication preferences, drivers, motivators, needs and personality. Then being able to flex your communication style, solve problems in the right way and often ‘sell’ solutions to achieve the diverse and never ending range of deliverables (seamlessly!).

Can you see patterns arising between business units/ departments and then make it easy for people to work together and value it?  Can you really be all things to all people without trading off your own personal style and brand? Yes.

One of the most important personnel attributes identified for workplaces – both today and for the future is high EQ (Emotional Quotient) – self-awareness, reading and flexing to others, and the ability to influence and adapt. Why? The organisations of today and our future have flatter structures, less employees and tighter budgets, and they need effective cross-organisational communication and collaboration.

You are ideally suited to facilitate this role and organisations are increasingly asking EA/PAs to step up to this as well as assume management tasks.

Getting Results without Authority  is more than just how to influence. It not only gives you the influence toolkit but also helps you understand yourself, your brand, and the keys to communication success with anyone. Current and future employment is very much about who you, how you communicate and the ability to effectively and efficiently influence, persuade and negotiate. These skills are lifelong employment skills.

The real question is can you afford to miss this unique course as part of your personal and professional development giving you the opportunity to build a personal EQ portfolio and make your work easier? No.


Top qualities of great leaders: create your leadership blend


Like with the best coffees, you can blend a mix of leadership skills and attitudes to achieve your desired taste.    

Make a list of people you admire. Chances are they have some traits in common such as charisma, vision, passion, self-confidence, authenticity and ability to engage others.

What do you value in a leader?

Enjoy some of the best articles on leadership we selected for you . You will see how leadership is an art you can train and grow.

7 Traits of Effective Leaders

An innovative leadership model you can easily pick up

How Influential Are You? Measure It!  

Discover authentic leadership

What leadership skills would you like to master? 

To create your own leadership blend, join our upcoming training courses facilitated by top trainers .

Build your vision with our popular Strategic Thinking and Planning course and learn how to engage with Difficult People and Different Personalities. Improve your Assertiveness & Self Confidence at Work and strengthen your influence by learning the key techniques of Influential Leaders.

See our full range of courses for professional development in management to upgrade your skills and succeed in your role.