How to Manage Managers: Six Revelations for First Time Senior Managers


by Sabina Nawaz

Have you ever been promoted for excelling at something, only to find your performance suddenly faltering?

This was the case for Sana after her promotion to a role as a senior manager responsible for managers rather than directly overseeing a team. There are substantive differences in how you manage individual contributors and how you manage managers. I’ll use Sana’s story to introduce six of these.

For three years, Sana had been viewed as an excellent people manager. She was in touch with the technology and cared deeply about helping team members produce flawless results. Her team was small but produced more code than some larger groups. People flocked to her organization and filled out strong employee satisfaction polls. Her promotion seemed to be a no-brainer.

Eight months into her new role, Sana didn’t feel connected to her new team, her direct reports didn’t say much during staff…

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