Jumat, 20 Februari 2009

Become a Manager in 7 Easy Steps (and Get Yourself Out of the Detail of a Subject)

. Jumat, 20 Februari 2009

One of the biggest challenges when moving up the career ladder is knowing how to give up control of the 'detail', i.e. influence and decision making of technical subject matters. To some people, it's losing their edge - their very basis of power and expertise. This can be a big misconception, particularly by those people who are already feeling the pull towards management and leadership positions.

Have you been through this journey yourself?

Breaking out of this mindset can take a long time, yet it can be achieved by eventually realizing that having a strong understanding of the concepts of a subject, and how to make it sound sensible and accessible to the layman, is even more powerful. Our role must be able to influence people outside of our subject matter. Decisions of funding, risk management and acceptance of business cases are generally performed by other people in our organization, so it is these people that we must learn to appeal to and build relationships with.

There are seven steps to take that will take use through this journey from subject-matter expert into a manager.

1) Understand the overall concept and value of a subject,
2) Know how it fits into the big picture and the business environment,
3) Develop messages and models that articulate its value to our organization,
4) Learn how our subject matter impacts other departments in our organization,
5) And how it is influenced by the work of other departments,
6) Understand its costs to our organization and our customers, and
7) Learn how to describe it in simple, plain language

This is the most powerful application of a subject!

It takes a brave person to make these steps, and confidence is the key. We don't really leave our subject behind, rather, we learn how to make use of it in the wider business context and demonstrate its value to colleagues outside of our department. It is then that we can manage our subjects as a Manager.

The author of this article Simon Stapleton is a coach helping Information Technology professionals with their Career Development, Commercial Development and Personal Development. His website http://www.simonstapleton.com

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