Hello, everyone. Welcome to How to Transition from Staff Member to Supervisor. This is the final topic in the 2022 Deer Oaks Supervisor Excellence Webinar series. I'm Greg Brannan from Deer Oaks. Great to be with you today.

Before we get started, though, I want to make sure that our technology is working for us. If you can hear my voice clearly and see the slides clearly, could you please find the raise hand icon in the GoToWebinar software and just click on that to let me that we're good to go technology-wise?

Thank you, folks. Looks like we're good to go technology-wise. I appreciate you taking the time to do that. I want to share a couple of other administrative details before we start with today's presentation.

So this is the fourth topic in the quarterly Supervisor Excellence Webinar series presented here by Deer Oaks in 2022. The first session was the Seven Habits of Highly-Effective Supervisors. That was presented back in February. In May, we came back with the Keys to Effectively Managing Employee Performance. In August, we did Strengthening the Team and today, of course, Transitioning from Staff Member to Supervisor.

If you missed any of the previous presentations, and you want a copy of the recording-- we record all of these sessions-- or the link to the recording, all you need to do is hit Reply to your GoToWebinar invitation for today and just request either the Seven Habits of Highly-Effective Supervisors from February, the Keys to Effectively Managing Employee Performance from May, or Strengthening the Team from August. We'd be happy to send you the recording link, so you can still view that online at your leisure.

I also want to let you know that this-- I believe this is-- we're ending our 10th year providing the series. And it's a series that we really enjoy providing for all of our client organizations, and we will be providing it again in 2023 with four different topics. And, again, it will be a quarterly presentation.

So be on the lookout for that schedule. That'll be sent to the human resources contact at each of your organizations here shortly before the end of the year. So, hopefully, you'll have an opportunity to attend some of those programs next year, as well.

Now, in terms of today, I want to remind everyone-- I know a lot of you have been on these programs before-- that during this presentation today, participants will be in less than listen-only mode, which means, of course, you won't be able to audibly ask questions during the formal part of the presentation, which should last probably somewhere around 35 minutes today, give or take. But your questions are important to me, and so when we get to the end of the formal part of the presentation, I'll open it up for questions.

At that point in time, please feel free to type any questions that you have into the question box. In the GoToWebinar software, you'll find that in the upper, right-hand corner of your screen. And we'll get to as many questions as time allows this afternoon. We do a very large audience today, so I'm anticipating a lot of questions, but I commit to getting to as many questions as we can this afternoon.

All right, folks, let's go ahead and get started. All right, so today's topic, obviously, is thinking about transitioning from being an individual employee or a staff member to a supervisor role, whether it be-- and, again, supervisory role can be a lot of different titles. It can be a team lead. It can be coordinator. You can be managing a project. You can have the formal assignment of being a supervisor, or a manager, or a director.

But when you're going from-- when you're transitioning from being a staff member to being a supervisor, there are some challenges that we need to address and some things we need to do to make that transition successfully. So that's what we're going to talk about today. I've got four objectives for our time together about this important topic.

One is to discuss the challenges of making the transition from-- having the mindset right of "I'm an individual performer, and I'm responsible for what for what I do personally, and that's my primary focus" to "I'm responsible for leading a team." And there's some different things that we need to do. There are some different ways we need to think about those roles. There are some different things we need to do functionally.

And then the second part of our class along those lines today will be-- we're going to talk about the different attitude, skills, and approaches necessary to succeed in the new role. Because what we're going to we'll delve into a little bit here today is a lot of research shows that what makes us successful as an individual performer or as an individual staff member-- those skills that made us successful as an individual contributor may not be the same skills or, at times, won't be the same skills that you're going to need to be successful in a supervisory role.

And so, along those lines, we're going to then drill down into the key people and performance management skills that you'll need to succeed in a supervisory role and, at the end of the day, enhance employee productivity and engagement. All right, let me start with a quote from the Ken Blanchard Companies. Some of you remember Ken Blanchard.

Ken Blanchard is still around. I believe he may be in his 80s, now. He was a really well-renowned leadership guru, particularly in the late 19-- yeah, the late 1900s, the late 20th century. He was, when I was coming up in the '80s and '90s in leadership, I mean, he was very well-known.

He wrote a lot of books-- The One Minute Manager. And he had a whole series of one minute books-- The One Minute Praising. He had a lot of really, really good leadership books. And he has a company that, I believe, one of his children is still running.

But I love this statement because I think it really describes the challenge of transitioning from individual worker to supervisor is that "The skills that serve a person, as an individual worker, as an individual employee, may not serve them well as a manager." All right, so to delve-- to drill down into that, I want to just share a couple of thoughts-- a couple of thoughts for us to think about, and then we'll launch into our content today.

One is I think it's probably a general fact-- not 100%, but it's a general fact that most new managers or new supervisors did a pretty good job in their former position, or they were high performers in their former position. And, oftentimes, that's what gets you promoted, right? I mean, if you were working as an accountant, and you were doing a great job in the technical part of your job as a staff accountant, and there was an opening to be director of accounting, I mean, you could be considered for that because you were doing such a good job in the individual contributor job.

Especially if people feel like you're likeable, and you've got good leadership abilities, you may get that opportunity to apply for that director of accounting job, right? And so that's not that's not unusual. Back before I got into the mental health field, before I went to school for counseling and became a trainer, I worked in sales right out of college. It was my first job out of college.

And because I like to communicate, I did a pretty good job as a salesperson, and I sold a lot of services for the company that I worked for. I worked in telecommunications back in those days. And so, as a result, after a couple of years of success as a salesperson, I was promoted to sales manager, so just like the example I gave a moment ago.

Now, the problem was, I didn't have the skill set to manage people. I knew how to sell things. Just like in my example, if you're an excellent accountant, and now you're responsible for managing the accounting team, you may be great at accounting-- the technical part. Like, I was great at selling-- the technical part of that. But you may not have the expertise to manage people and motivate and lead teams because it is a different skill set or different set of skills.

And the fact is, the research shows that more than half of new supervisors struggle to find success in their first two years in their new role, and it's because, again, the transition is-- so many people are going from they were really good at the individual performance part. They really were great at the technical skills. They had great technical expertise. But once they got promoted into the supervisory role, they didn't have the skill set.

And that was what I-- I mean, I struggled mightily my first two years. The first teams I was managing back then, I had turnover. They weren't performing in a way I wanted them to perform. I mean, I just-- and I was struggling.

And I was frustrated because I did really well as an individual salesperson. I thought I was anticipating I'd have the same success as a sales manager. But, again, a successful track record as an individual performance does not guarantee you're going to be successful as a manager because it's a different skill set.

Rather than using technical skills and managing yourself and being responsible for doing things the way you feel like they should be done, when you get into a supervisory role, now it's about leading people, and coaching people, and holding people accountable. It's more about the team than it is about the individual performance. And that's a tough transition to make. It was very difficult for me.

And the research shows that more than half of new managers really struggle to make that transition. One of the things that motivated me to develop this presentation many years ago is I really struggled with this transition, and I see that a lot of other people do, as well. And it's understandable because it's different. You need different skills in the new position.

And, again, along those lines, some of the things that you did that made you successful as an individual performer-- again, being a self-starter, rolling up your sleeves and doing all the work yourself, being kind of a maverick and getting out there and doing it your way-- that doesn't necessarily work when you're responsible for leading a team where you have to be good at delegating and taking more of a team approach than in an individual approach.

So let me start with some of the transition that we actually have to go through, and then I'm going to get into some of the important supervisory skills that it's going to take to succeed in the new role. But we need to think about the functional transition first and foremost. When we're working as an individual employee, again, it's about doing things yourself. You're managing yourself.

And when you're moving into a leadership role or a supervisory role, you go from working on your own and just being focused on managing yourself, doing things the way you want to do them to collaborating with others, giving others room to do things the way they think they should be done, rather than doing it your way all the time, from getting things done yourself to getting things done through people. And that's a tough transition to make. It was really hard for me.

I was so used to just-- if I needed to improve performance, I just would roll up my sleeves, and I knew what to do to build a better pipeline and to increase sales. But when I was responsible for managing a sales team, that wasn't translating for me because I knew how I wanted to do it, but other people come to the table with their own ideas. And I didn't make-- it was a hard transition for me to make-- to give people room to do things the way they wanted to do things.

And then the other functional transition that I think it's important to keep in mind is remember the old saying that there's no I in team? Well, when you're an individual performer, it's all about us, right? It's about us as individuals because, again, you have a job description. And, again, most people that get promoted were pretty successful in their individual performer role.

And, now, you're going from being part of the team where you could control everything you did to being leader of the team where you're thinking more about the we. Rather than thinking about the I, now you're thinking about the we. And that's a tough transition, especially if you're someone that's used to just getting it done yourself.

And, again, leadership skills aren't-- you don't necessarily learn a lot of leadership skills as an individual performer. Some people have natural leadership ability, of course. But, again, because you're focused on your own doing your own work, you're not really thinking about the leadership part of that.

And when you become a supervisor, you need to start thinking about that. How do I lead a team of people? And to continue on into that, it also impacts our mindset. We need to shift our mindset. We need to go from prioritizing individual success to prioritizing team success, right?

And, in addition, we need to be thinking less about doing what's going to work best for us-- how can we get ahead? How can we succeed as individuals, as individual professionals-- to, how do I function every day to ensure that my team is going to succeed? How do I make a commitment to supporting my people and be there for them and have their back, help them grow?

And then recognizing the importance of your role as a leader-- I mean, this was something I really had to get my arms around. I thought that-- honestly, my mindset in my first management job really was just to duplicate what I did as an individual performer and now with a group of people. And I would be in charge of that group of people, and I was just going to do exactly what I did that helped me be successful as an individual performer.

And it didn't work. I had people that had their own ideas, of course, and that were experienced, and they wanted more support. They didn't want to be told how to do things. They wanted support. They wanted someone who was going to be there to work with them, not just tell them how to do things.

And so, again, you have to shift your mindset. You've got to get out of that "I'm here to do it my way" to "I'm here to figure out what's the best way for everyone to work. Let's collaborate. Let's get ideas from everybody. Let's be willing to be open to everyone's ideas because we're going to work together as a team."

Now, also, if it's your first supervisory job, we need to be thinking about adopting a positive leadership style or management style. And that can be tough for people, too. Sometimes, when people get into their first supervisory role or maybe one of their first-- their initial opportunities to be a supervisor, people may not be as thoughtful about how to step into leadership, how to take authority.

It's not uncommon for people who are new to supervisory roles to get into that role with the mindset "I'm the boss now." I struggled with some of that in my first supervisory assignment. I started to think, I'm the boss now, so my job is to tell everyone else what to do.

And, as most of us that have leadership ability, that's not that's not a good leadership approach. People can feel like they're being talked down to, they're being bossed around or even micromanaged. And so we need to think about, if you're going to step into a supervisory role, how can I step into a leadership role without being too bossy, too domineering, or too directive?

How can I step into that role and start working with people in a really respectful and collaborative way? And that's being more of a coach than a boss. And I know a lot of the difference. People who have more of a boss approach or more of a boss mindset see themselves as the boss, and they feel like they're calling the shots.

They're telling people what to do and how to do it. They're the ones solving all the problems. If there's a performance issue, they're the ones recommending how performance should be improved, where a coaching approach is more about a partnership between the supervisor and the employee to figure out, what's the best work plan here-- get the employee's input.

Give the employee-- show interest in the employee's ideas and value their capabilities and their ways of doing things and, if there's problems, working together to solve problems instead of just dictating solutions yourself. And if the employee is having some performance issues, it's not about you fixing the employee or you telling the employee how to correct their performance, necessarily. But it's working with the employee to come up with to brainstorm some ways to improve performance.

And, again, whether you're respectful with employees, when you're collaborating with them like that, they usually are going to be more motivated to follow through and do good work. And, of course, a positive management style is also one that creates an environment of support, where people feel like "My leader really cares about me as a person. My supervisor respects me and is interested in my ideas and my input. Whenever I have a problem, I can go to them, and I they've got my back. They'll help me."

And so those are the kinds of things we need to be thinking about when you step into a supervisory role, especially for the first time or maybe early on in your supervisory career is to be thinking about, how can I be relational? It's interesting. Gallup, the polling company-- I most of you are pretty familiar with them. They do a lot of employee engagement research.

And one of the things they found in some of their early research-- they talked to over a million US employees, public and private, so across all industries. And they were trying to figure out, what really causes employees to get engaged and do their best work-- to be motivated, to go to work and be successful, to give 100%?

And what they found was that, regardless of why someone takes a job, that how long they stay in their position and how productive they are well they're there has most to do with their interpersonal relationship with their direct supervisor. If that supervisor-- if their relationship with their supervisor is one where they feel supported, and respected, and cared about as a person, that employee typically is a lot more motivated to do their best work. So we need to be thinking about adopting a more supportive management style, one that's more collaborative.

And then, as we transition into the new role, we also sometimes have to define or redefine coworker relationships. So if you've been promoted into-- some of you either have been promoted into positions where you were one of the team, and now you're supervising that same team. Or maybe you were promoted into another department within your organization, and you're going to be supervising a different team, but now you're still going to be interacting with the people from those other departments that used to be your peers.

We used to call it going from buddy to boss. And I know the title of this presentation today is Transitioning from Staff Member to Supervisor. But that's a particularly important transition to be mindful of or be sensitive to. And that's happened to me a couple of times in my career where I was one of the teammates, one of the employees on the team, and I was promoted to be the supervisor of that department.

And so, all of a sudden, you're now managing people or supervising people that used to work side-by-side with. So that's a particularly challenging situation, so you need to just be thinking about that. Be thinking about, if you've been promoted into a position where you're now managing people used to work side-by-side with, you're going to have to redefine that relationship a little bit.

I think it's really important to bring people in and talk about it early in your new role. And just be honest with them. Say to them, I still care about you. I wanted to talk to you about this. Now that I've got this new role, I want to let you that our relationship will probably change a little bit, but I want you to know that it's not because I don't care about you. I do care about you.

And it's-- particularly if you were buddies with that person when you were working side-by-side-- you don't want to hurt that person's feeling by feelings by pushing away too far, but we have to also have some professional boundaries now, right? So we need to call them in and say, I just want to make you aware that in my new role, I'm going to have to have some professional boundaries, so I'm not going to be able to be as close to you as I was before.

But I still want you to know it's not because I don't care about you. It's just because I'm going to-- I need to transition into my new role. So I may not be able to go out to lunch with you as often as I did before or those kinds of things, but I want you to it's not because they don't care about or I think that I'm better than you-- not at all.

It's just I need to adjust to my new role, and I don't want others on the team thinking that I'm playing favorites. And if you and I have to have some performance management conversations, I need to at least have some objectivity so that I can be really fair with you as we talk about those kinds of things. A lot of times, if you have that conversation at the beginning of the transition of going from buddy to boss, people will be more understanding.

If you don't have that conversation, and you just put distance there and just try to be a little bit more professional and not as friendly, people can get their feelings hurt. Your former colleagues can feel like, wow, what's with them? Why are they acting like they're more important than I am?

We used to hang out together, and now they're acting like they don't have time for me, when that's not the case at all. You're trying to do your best to transition into the new role and have some professional boundaries. Now, if there is an employee on your team-- this is another, just if it's ever happened to you. It's happened to me before.

If there's an employee on your team that either feels threatened by you and your new position, or maybe is a little bit jealous because they felt like they should have gotten the position that you were hired into, and they're upset about that, you also want to be sensitive to that. I bring those folks in, and I really let them that, hey, I know that you-- especially if that they actually threw their hat in the ring for your position-- say, I know that you are pretty capable of doing this job, too.

And, if you don't mind, if I can consult with you from time to time and get your advice on things, I'd sure appreciate it because I could learn a lot from you. So make that person feel respected and that kind of thing. And let them that if they're still interested in transitioning into a supervisory role at some point, you'll do everything you can to help them in their continued professional growth. And so be thinking about those things, as well, so there's not hard feelings by that other person.

All right, the next piece to talk about, folks, that's really important is, like the statistic I shared from Gallup a moment ago, your interpersonal relationship with your employees is going to be the game changer-- how you get along with people every day. It's really important. And I missed this early on. This is something I had to learn the hard way over the years.

I've now been managing people for going on 30 years. I would say, the first half of my supervisory career, I wasn't great at this. Fortunately, I did get some better training along the way, and, through trial and error, I started to realize that the quality of my relationship with the people I was supervising was actually every bit as important as the work that we were working on together-- completing the tasks, working on the projects.

And so make sure you're spending some time on a regular basis developing strong relationships with your employees. I think a good rule of thumb is, before you get down to business with people, at least on and off-- I'd say, as often as you can. I try to make sure on a somewhat regular basis, I ask people how they're doing, how their families are.

Because you find out about, as you're getting to know your employees, what their interests are, ask them about their interests-- if they're a Cowboys fan or a Texans fan, if you live in Texas, if they're a Longhorn fan, or an Aggie fan. I know we've got people on the call today from around the country. But I try to keep in touch with if people have children, if you know that there's something going on in their lives that's important to them, or what their professional goals are.

It's important that we catch up with people. You don't just get down to business. If the only time your people hear from you is when you're making an assignment or working with them to solve a work problem, people won't feel as cared about.

And there's employee engagement research that shows that people get most engaged-- which means they come to work to give 100%-- if they believe their boss cares about them as a person. So make sure that you're really getting to know your employees personally. I'm not talking about being best friends because you have to have professional boundaries. But I'm talking about taking an interest in them as people and just regularly asking them what's important to them and being just being a caring person.

And be a good listener. Don't be preoccupied with what you got to do next when you're talking to people. Give them your full attention. This is one of the things that's made me a much better-- or much more effective supervisor than I was the first half of my leadership career is I've learned to do a better job of just taking an interest in people.

And the quality of my relationships with the people that I supervise nowadays-- it's a lot better than it was 15, 20 years ago when I was much more focused on just tasks. I found that you have to have a balance between task management and people leadership. And I know a lot of you know what I'm talking about there. But make sure that the quality of your relationships with your people is really strong because that's the number-one predictor to people being motivated to do their best work.

And then focus on the quality of your interpersonal communication with employees every day. I think it's really, really important, folks, to remember that, whether you're sending an email, sending a text, jumping on a Teams call or a Zoom call with an employee, or having a one-on-one meeting face-to-face when you're in the office together, that you take the time regularly to be thoughtful about those conversations, that you're not just-- those conversations are not just you telling them what to do or you taking the lead.

It's about being a respectful communicator, showing an interest in people's ideas, showing an interest in their lives, what's going on in their world, and then making sure that the way you communicate is as polite and kind and friendly as possible. It's really important. Think about this. Bob Nelson, a leadership guru-- I loved his quote.

He was he was quoted as saying, "The sum of an employee"-- I'm sorry-- "The level of an individual employee's motivation is the result of the sum of the interactions they have with their immediate supervisor." I'll say that again. So the motivation of an individual employee is typically the sum of the interactions they have with their supervisor.

If their supervisor is interested in them, spends time with them, values their input, is friendly, is caring, that individual employee is typically going to be motivated and engaged to do their best work. I'm very blessed at Deer Oaks. I've got a great boss. Our executive director really is a really supportive, caring leader, like I'm talking about today. I love working for her.

I've been with Deer Oaks for 11 years, and she's a big part of the reason that I love working at Deer Oaks. I mean, she's just-- I know she cares about me as a person. We start our meetings together, and she's asking about my family, how my grandkids are doing. She knows what I'm interested in.

And when we're working on things together, I feel like she values my input. And the way she interacts with me is in a very caring, supportive, respectful way. And, as a result, I mean, I'm very motivated to do my best work working with her.

So let's make sure that the quality of the relationships you have with your people and the quality of the day-to-day communication is really, really strong. Because, when that happens, again, people are typically going to be more motivated to do their best work. And part of that is you'll have a more trusting relationship the better you communicate with people, which means keeping people informed, make sure they what's going on a regular basis. My boss also does a great job with that.

When we make a mistake, let's apologize. Make sure that people that we're apologizing, that we made a mistake. Because we're all-- our employees don't necessarily think that their bosses should be perfect, right? But for some reason, sometimes, we as supervisors think if we made a mistake, oh, no, I hope the staff doesn't find out I screwed up.

Well, the truth is, the staff's going to about it, right? People are smart. And I think it's much better if you go to your people and say, hey, I blew that one. I made a mistake, and I apologize. And people respect that. People respect transparency like that, honesty like that.

And, also, on the other side, when employees make a mistake, don't be too critical. If you're too critical when someone makes a mistake-- now, not that you shouldn't have coaching sessions and give people constructive feedback. We should. That's part of being a supervisor. But let's not be overly critical. Let's not let's not be nitpicking or micromanaging.

If people feel like you're looking over their shoulder, or you're too hard to please, or you nitpick when they make a mistake, they'll feel beaten up when they make a mistake, and they won't take risks moving forward. They won't share their ideas. They'll hesitate to bring things to you for fear of you'll be too critical. So let's make sure that people are comfortable-- that we're gracious with people and people are comfortable coming to us for help.

In addition, let's be thinking about priorities, folks. We're getting towards the end here, and then I'll open it up for questions. Make sure you're on the same page with staff. And, to do that, I truly believe in one-on-one meetings. There's a lot of research that says that when employees have regularly scheduled, one-on-one meetings with their direct supervisor-- now, there's no research that says it has to be every week. It could be every other week, once a month.

There's something about that cadence-- that communications cadence of meeting with people one-on-one. And I personally believe, and there's been some good articles about this since the pandemic, that if you're managing people that are working remotely or in a hybrid role where you don't see them every day-- they may be in the office sometimes and at home sometimes working-- that it's even more important to have regularly scheduled meetings with people so you stay connected with them and you know that you're there for them. They know that you care about them. They won't feel isolated.

And so, again, set up a dependable communications rhythm. I do one-on-one meetings with my team every week. Now, I've only got three direct reports nowadays, so it's easy for me to do it weekly. If you've got a bigger team like 10, 12, 15 employees, maybe you only do it once every other week or once a month.

But there's something about having regular, one-on-one meetings with staff that allows you to stay connected, demonstrate that you care about them, catch up with them about what's going on in their life-- so strengthen that bond between you and them. Gallup, the polling company, again, says that people that have regular one-on-one meetings, structured one-on-one meetings with their boss are generally three times more motivated to do their best work or to be fully engaged, and so it's really important to do that.

And that also gives you a chance, during those regular one-on-one meetings, to stay on the same page together, to follow up on work in progress, to stay on the same page in terms of priorities. And, to use a performance management approach, I just want to share two pieces here of a really effective performance management approach. One of the things newer supervisors sometimes struggling with is holding people accountable to get the work done because we're learning how to do that.

Again, leadership management skills sometimes are different than skills we used as an individual performer, so we may not have a lot of experience gracefully but consistently holding people accountable. So we might have a tendency to be a little bit too direct or looking over people's shoulders too much where they feel micromanaged, and that can be uncomfortable for people. So you want to figure out a performance management process that's comfortable for you to hold people accountable so you know the work's getting done, but also not too intrusive for people where they feel like you're looking over their shoulder and micromanaging them.

So a good process-- I'm going to just use the first two steps of this-- is to collaborate on the assignment of work. What I mean by that is develop work plans together with your staff. Don't be so hands-on that you're telling people what to do and how to do it when you assign work. You want to talk about the assignment. Your job is to make the assignment and tell the employee what it is you need them to do and why.

But you should give the employee input, I think we probably would all agree, into how the work's going to be done, right? A good rule of thumb is the supervisor, when you're assigning work, should be talking about the what and the why, and the employee should be given input into the how. We hired them to do the work. We should be giving them at least a lot of input into how that work is going to get done.

So you collaborate on the work plan, and what the goals are, and what the expectations are for the project or for the task. But a really good process to follow up, again, in a nonintrusive way or a nonmicromanaging way is, at the end of the conversation when you're assigning that work, is you agree with the employee as to how often you'll talk about following up on their progress on that assignment.

Now, I'm not talking about one-off tasks, right? No one has time to micro-manage tasks like individual emails. But I'm talking about, let's say you assign someone a 30-day project, and you want to just stay on top of it to make sure it's progressing the way you need it to progress because you know your boss has certain expectations about it.

And so a good way to do that would be to-- when you meet with the employee to talk about it, and you collaborate on the work plan-- is to agree that, do you mind during our weekly one-on-ones or our biweekly one-on-one meetings, would you mind just being prepared to give me an update on the progress of this project because it's high-profile for our department head? Now, that employee-- now you have an opportunity, just in the regular flow of work, to follow up with someone about, hey, how's that project going?

And people won't feel like you're looking over their shoulder because you agreed the day you assigned the work and you collaborated together on the work plan that they would be giving you some sort of a progress update during your regular one-on-one meetings. So you don't have to actually be looking over their shoulder afterwards, if you're not getting any feedback from them. And that works really, really well. So, again, collaborate on the work plan and then agree how often you'll follow up and request to file a progress report to make sure that the work is progressing.

Last but not least, and I'll open up, folks, for questions, is make sure that you're mindful of how you handle stress and pressure when you're in a supervisory role, especially if it's something you've never been in before or maybe it's early in your supervisory career. This was a big problem for me early on, as well. Your plate will be full. Most new supervisors have a much longer to-do list now that they're a supervisor than they did when they were an individual performer because now you're not only responsible for your work, but you're responsible to make sure everybody else completes their work.

And so just remember that being a manager, being a supervisor carries some extra responsibilities and extra pressure, and take care of your own stress. Manage your own stress. If you're not good at managing the stress of being a supervisor-- and I wasn't great at this early on. I had to learn-- what tends to happen is when you feel pressured-- like if you feel like there's performance pressure on you from above from your department head or your boss, and you're feeling pressured, and you're not managing that pressure well, it could cause you to be too pushy and to pass that pressure along to your staff.

You start looking over their shoulder too much and micromanaging too much because you're feeling pressure from above. And so one of the things is when you sign up to be a supervisor, you just need to that it's going to carry more responsibility and more things to do and more performance expectations. But our job is to manage that-- manage our own stress so that we don't pass that pass that on and make our stress our people's stress.

And be aware of your own tendencies under pressure. One of the things I used to micromanage-- if I felt stressed, or I felt like my boss was looking over my shoulder, I would start getting more-- becoming more of a micromanager of my people. And I had to stop that. I had to learn not to pass that on.

I had to learn how to not make my stress their stress because I'm the one that signed up to be the supervisor, and so it's not right for-- just because I'm feeling pressured right now because you get extra pressure, extra performance expectations, sometimes, when you're in the supervisory role-- to not pass that on to my staff, to be mindful of managing my stress myself effectively-- taking care of myself, taking my lunch breaks, keeping my life in balance so that when I'm interacting with my staff, I'm not always in a hurry and acting all stressed out, which can make my interactions with my staff not be as effective.

All right, last but not least, folks, let's open it up for questions. If you have any questions, please type them into the question box in the GoToWebinar software in the upper, right-hand corner of your screen. We have plenty of time for questions today. Again, if you have any questions, type them into the question box in the GoToWebinar software in the upper, right-hand corner of your screen.

I have some people asking for copies of some of the earlier programs. I can't fulfill that from here from this end, but if you wouldn't mind just sending an email, hit Reply to your GoToWebinar invitation for today. If you want any of the previous sessions, which were the Seven Habits of Highly-Effective Supervisors, the Keys to Effectively Managing Employee Performance, and Strengthening The Team, all you have to do is hit Reply to your GoToWebinar invitation or reminder for today that you received from the GoToWebinar system. That goes directly to our administrative team, and just request whichever one of those you want-- the PowerPoint or the recording link-- and we'd be happy to send those to you. Thank you.

All right, we've got some really good questions coming in. All right, here's one. As an individual contributor, my accomplishments made me happy. As a new manager, I'm struggling with finding joy in my job. Any tips to offer? I appreciate that. That's exactly the situation I was in 28, 29 years ago in my first management role.

Absolutely. I really enjoyed-- I enjoyed my role as an individual performer. I really did. I enjoyed it. I enjoyed-- and because I was doing well, and I got a lot of good feedback. I mean, it was just-- it was a good really good feeling professionally.

And when I got into my new job, because I wasn't finding a lot of early success, and I really didn't have the skills-- the people skills yet to be a good leader, so I was sort of trying to find my way. And because I was struggling, I wasn't enjoying-- when we're struggling-- when we're successful, when things are going well, you're naturally going to enjoy your job more. When you're struggling finding joy in the new job, it's harder to enjoy.

So one of the things I want to share is be patient. They say that leaders-- there's an old saying that leaders are either born or made. I believe both are true, honestly. Some people have more natural leadership abilities than others, but everyone can learn to be a good leader.

These are skills that, like we've been talking about today, that we can all learn. And if I can learn to be a better leader, anyone can. And so I just so I want to suggest that, if you're struggling early in your new supervisory role, don't be too hard on yourself. It's not unusual. It can be a hard transition.

But be patient with yourself. Just keep working on your people skills. Try to really-- because, really, the game changer in how you work with your team every day is what we talked about today. It's your interpersonal skills.

Make sure that the quality of your interactions with people is high, where you're being really respectful. You're being really supportive. You're being collaborative. You're being respectful in how you interact with the staff. When you're getting those skills down, those are the skills that will most motivate your team to do their best work.

And, certainly, a lot of the other things we need to learn, also, as we grow into our-- and gain more skill in our new supervisory responsibility, but be patient with yourself and focus on the people part because that'll help you get up to speed faster. You'll get more positive results as you're doing that effectively day in, day out, and you'll enjoy the journey more.

It's the relationships with people, I think we all know, that drive job satisfaction. And so if you're focusing more on the people part, that will help you get more job satisfaction early on and help you, eventually, have more success early on in your supervisory role. Thank you. That was great.

Here's another one. Do you have additional advice for managing employees who are older than you? Yes. I'll never forget-- I was probably-- I think, my first supervisor job, I was in my mid-twenties, and I had a 40-year-old woman that reported to me. And I could tell she wasn't real comfortable reporting to someone 14, 15 years younger than her, at first.

And so one of the things I did to start to gain some respect from her and, I think, to help her be more comfortable working with me as her supervisor is I really treated her with a lot of respect. And I would call her in and ask for advice a lot because she had a lot of experience. I mean, she was older than me, a lot of experience.

And that helped. That helped. When she saw that I was interested in her ideas and that I respected her capabilities and experience, that helped her be more comfortable working with me. So that was one of the things that I tried that worked.

Let's continue on, folks. OK, here's another good one. How does a manager divvy out tasks without it becoming micromanaging? That's a great point. And so what you want to try to do when you're divvying out tasks is you want to try to assign tasks to people that have the ability to do them well and may be interested in those tasks.

Sometimes, we just automatically send tasks to people we think that it fits their job responsibilities. But when you're assigning work, a lot of times, if you can be very thoughtful about, who would enjoy doing this most-- this particular task most? Now, certainly, we've got to consider whose job responsibility it is and who the right person is to do the job.

But if you can try to match someone's responsibilities with their interests and give them assignments that you know that they'll be interested in and motivated to do, a lot of times people will be more engaged to doing it well. And then, as you divvy out those tasks, make sure that you're giving people input into how they're going to do it. You're not just telling them how to do the work.

It becomes-- it feels more like micromanaging if you're assigning a task and then telling the person exactly how to do it. That's telling people what to do and how to do it. That feels like micromanaging. Remember that we hired people to do the job. They're subject matter experts in their responsibilities.

And so our job is to make the right assignment of work but then facilitate giving that person input into how that work is going to get done. You can weigh in also, obviously, but make sure you give them a lot of input into how that work gets done. And when you do that, they won't feel as micromanaged.

We've got a lot of great questions here today, folks. We're, unfortunately, not going to be able to all of them, but I'll get to as many as I can here. Here's a really good one. As a new manager, I feel-- let me-- oh, here it is. I'm looking for-- I'm trying to find questions that I think would have the widest audience appeal right now.

Is that-- what sort of boundaries are needed for friends and peers that you are now supervising? I know I talked a little bit about that today, and we can drill down into that a little bit more. Would it be OK to continue to hang out outside of work? That's a good question.

I asked the CEO that I worked for 25 years ago-- I was struggling with that-- with the very issue you're just bringing up in this question. And I asked the CEO-- I said to him, how do you how do you still maintain connection with people but not get too close? And he said, the key is to be friendly with everybody, but you can't be their best friends when you're their direct supervisor because you have to maintain objectivity and have some professional boundaries.

And so to answer your question, I mean, it'll be up to you as to how much you hang out with people outside of work. But a good way of thinking about that is you can be friendly, which means you can go out to lunch with someone once in a while when you're the supervisor, if you have a relationship, and you've got a connection. But maybe you don't do it as often as you used to. Maybe you don't do it every week.

If you used to go out to lunch with someone every week in the past when you were peers, maybe you don't do that as often. And just let them know, I can't do it as often. And one of the reasons you don't want to is you don't want the rest of the team to feel like you're playing favorites because you're always with that one person. And so you want to be a little bit more fair about that.

And, sure, if there's a business reason to have lunch together just to stay connected or to do your one-on-one meeting over lunch, if that's what you want to do, I mean, I think it's fine to do that as long as we don't overdo it. You want to be careful not to get too close. And so that can be too connected in social media. That can be spending too much time with people outside of work.

Again, that could be-- if you're too bonded outside of work, and you need to make a tough decision about managing someone's performance or correcting their performance or behavior, it could be really awkward for you because you've got that personal relationship. So it's important to try to maintain that boundary of-- you can be friendly, which can include a little bit of connection because you do want people to you care about them, including maybe going out to lunch once in a while-- that kind of stuff.

But you don't want to be overly connected with people outside of work. Certainly, you can do some socializing, if it's a team gathering outside of work where the whole team is going to someone's house for a barbecue, or going out to a restaurant for a team meeting, or something like that. But you wouldn't want to overdo that where people would feel like the boundaries are blurred, and it's too much of a close friendship. Again, you've got to have some professional objectivity.

All right, time for-- I think we can do maybe two or three more questions. These are great questions. Thank you for being so thoughtful about this.

All right, here's a good one. I enjoyed my job, but now, as a manager, I sometimes feel like I'm babysitting adults. It's a lot harder than what it looks like-- than what it looks, and I always said I wouldn't be like my supervisor. Any advice? That's a good one.

That's a really good question, because sometimes it does feel that way, right? I mean, when you're in a supervisory role, you may feel like-- because along with that responsibility is holding people accountable to get the work done and making sure that people are following policy and doing things the right way, managing the quality of the work. And, sometimes, it's managing how the team is getting along together. So, sometimes, it can feel like you're really overseeing and watching over the behavior and performance of adults. I understand that.

But if we, I guess, take a step back and look at that as a partnership where I don't see myself as the boss. If you see yourself as the boss, and your job is to try to manage everyone's behavior and manage everyone's performance, and it's really a top-down approach, you can feel like your job is more oversight than collaboration. I enjoy the supervisory role more when I work with people instead of telling people what to do.

And I did too much of that early on. I was too directive early on in my management career 25 years ago. I was too directive. Again, my mindset was "I'm the boss here, and I need to be telling people what to do and how to do it, telling people how to solve the problems."

And when I started learning how to be a partner, how to collaborate with people where, if there was a problem, I would bring someone in that I thought would have the ability-- or I'd take it to the entire team at a team meeting, and we'd brainstorm solutions. And working together on things makes me feel less like I'm just providing oversight and more like we're in this together.

We're a team. We're partnering. We're collaborating to get this work done or to solve this problem. It's much more enjoyable to do-- to approach your relationship with your employees in that way.

And, typically, your employees are going to like that approach a lot more. They're going to feel more respected, more a part of things, and more supported by you and enjoy working with you more. So that's the approach that I eventually learned to take, and it's worked a lot better than my early approaches of being too direct.

Someone's also asking if this recorded session will be available to view. Yes, it will be. Again, if you want a copy of this recorded session or the link to this recorded session or any of the previous sessions in this year's Supervisor Excellence webinar series, all you have to do is hit Reply to your GoToWebinar invitation for today, and ask our staff, and they'd be happy to send it to you.

All right, got time for one more question, folks. I'm trying to find another really good one. Been some great questions, folks. Thanks for being so thoughtful.

All right, here's a good, last question. And I'm sorry I wasn't able to answer everybody's questions today, but hopefully the ones we've addressed have been helpful. So what's your recommendation in dealing with a staff member who requires constant coaching on the same things over and over with no improvement?

That's a really, really good question. And that can be a frustrating part of a supervisory role is when you're trying to work with someone, you're trying to get them to improve their performance, and so you meet with them. You coach them. You talk about how things need to be improved, and then they go back and keep making the same mistake over and over, or they don't follow through on what they had committed to do to improve performance.

That can be really frustrating. And so, first of all, you want to take a coaching approach. And a coaching approach, again, is having collaborative conversations. So if you're meeting with the employee-- sometimes we don't get follow-through from employees when we're managing performance because we're dictating the solutions, and the employee hasn't bought in.

And so if you're too directive-- and, again, this was a problem I had early on. So if someone was doing something wrong, I would bring them in, and I would point out here's my observation. Here's why this isn't working. And here's where your performance is deficit, and here's what I need you to do to fix it.

When I was dictating the solution or dictating the performance improvement plan, I would find sometimes employees wouldn't be motivated to follow through on that because it was my idea. They maybe had a different idea. Nowadays, when I'm having coaching conversations, I try to approach it more in a collaboration where I say to the employee, here's what I'm observing. We need to do a better job with this.

So instead of me then dictating the solution, I'll say, what do you think you could do to turn this around? Or let's brainstorm together, maybe, a way that we could improve this situation here. Give the employee input into how the performance will be corrected.

I find when I give in-place input into the corrective action plan or the performance improvement plan, they typically buy in more and are more motivated to follow up, and it's less frustrating. But when I was dictating solutions, a lot of times, people weren't following my ideas because they had their own ideas. But when I've collaborated with people on how things were going to be improved and got their input, oftentimes, people buy in more and are more likely to follow up.

All right, thank you, folks, for those questions. Great questions today. In closing, I want to thank you for being with us this year. Again, I believe this was our 10th year. We're completing our 10th year of the Supervisor Excellence webinar series. It was very well-attended again this year.

We will, again, in 2023 have another Supervisor Excellence webinar series. So be on the lookout for that schedule. It will be new topics, different topics next year. And, again, it will be a quarterly series.

And believe it or not, we're almost at Thanksgiving, and we're almost at the holidays. Folks, again, it's such a privilege for us here at Deer Oaks to be the employee assistance provider for your organization. If you need to how to reach Deer Oaks, reach out to HR, human resources, in your organizations, and they should they should be able to give you the contact information for Deer Oaks. We're available 24 hours a day, seven days a week through our toll-free number.

And thank you for taking your time with me today and throughout this series this year. I wish you a very happy Thanksgiving and a wonderful holiday season. And I hope to be with you on different topics in this series going into 2023. Thank you so much, everybody. Take care. Happy holidays.