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Things You Need to Know When Managing Your First Team


Things You Need to Know When Managing Your First Team

Coggno Inc. | Aug, 13 2010

“ I walked into the conference room,  there were 8 team members sitting there waiting for me. I didn’t know who knew what, who was supposed to be doing what, and worst of all, hardly knew their names”.

When managing a team, particularly a team that is new to you one critical factor is evaluating their capabilities. Often, when taking over a group or a project, there is not much data or documentation that tells you about the capabilities of its members, and this can lead to serious problems when you begin to try and delegate responsibilities in an effective manner.

Often the previous manager, team lead, or director, was quickly moved, and left little or no notes pertaining team members. So its left to you, the team lead to sort out how to effectively transfer knowledge, who has what strengths, and how to best capitalize on them.  Getting the soft skills evaluated can be easier; a group session by an intuitive manager can lead to some significant insights about his or her team. You can quickly become familiar with personalities and communication styles.  It’s the hard skills, the operational, or technical, performance abilities that are difficult to evaluate. This can be particularly critical when a group has been together for a long period of time.  Often team members will compensate for one and others strengths and weaknesses leading to a scrum of activity that makes it particularly difficult to evaluate who is doing, and responsible for what exactly.

An excellent way to avoid situations, and quickly and transparently asses and measure what everyone knows and what their strengths are is to deploy a pre meeting assessment on a hosted Learning Management System like newbeta.coggno.com .  By using an online learning platform, you can quickly and easily upload and deploy the quiz or test, and because you are not present while they are completing it, you don’t have the awkwardness inherent in an instructor lead evaluation, your audience won’t  feel judged. The evaluations also go a long o set a sense of inherent expectations, and project a measure of management discipline that you may be seeking when taking on a new team.

Using the Learning Management System at www.newbeta.coggno.com is a great cost effective way to facilitate this. The tools are intuitive and easy to use, there is no set-up fee, and best of all, the per-use system make it extremely cost effective.

The evaluations you create will go a long way to setting up a sense of inherent expectations, and project a measure of management discipline that you will be seeking when taking on a new team.


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