Avoiding mistakes as a new manager

This Mashable article discusses the experiences of Amazon GM, Ian McAllister. It outlines mistakes new managers can make during their first few weeks on the job. Experienced managers still make mistakes, though hopefully fewer. We’re talking about performance management and recruitment, looking at what not to do.

Performance management

Dealing with performance management issues in a timely manner is imperative. Taking early action allows you to give gentle, corrective feedback. The longer you take, the firmer you will need to be when taking corrective action, and employee habits can be harder to reverse. You should always document poor performance. Keep a record in your own files. As a new manager, you might not be ready to think about employee termination, but you need documentation of issues just in case it comes to that down the track.

You can also send feedback via email after a meeting with an employee. This will ensure employees understand the gravity of an issue (“This email summarises the discussion we just had”). Remember that documenting good performance is just as important. Good managers attempt to redirect kudos and credit onto their team, or ideally, individual team member rather than taking credit themselves. You can choose to to share the feedback with just the employee, their department or the whole company. It is a great way to recognise contributions to the team and company. If you’re very satisfied with how an employee is performing, invest in making him or her more satisfied with their job. Find ways for them to do more of what makes them happy and less of what doesn’t by creating growth and opportunity for them.This is great for performance review time, so pay attention to your high performing employees too.


Avoid being a lazy recruiter. Good managers act quickly, reviewing CVs, allowing time for phone interviews. They make quick hiring decisions and are aggressive in getting from offer to acceptance. Lazy recruiting loses candidates to other companies or internal teams. The article says that bad managers wait until they have an approved position and a job description up on the company’s website. Good managers are always sourcing and recruiting, chatting to prospective candidates regularly.

Consider exactly what you need, and interview candidates who meet that profile. Our candidates all have automotive experience, saving you time and energy. Keep the bar high, and you’ll hire the right person the first time, every time.

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