Congratulations on Your Promotion! (Now What?)

By Brenda Hampel, Founder and Partner of Connect the Dots Consulting and
CWCC Member

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The transition from high performing “doer” to effective “leader” can be a challenging process!

Congratulations on Your Promotion!  (Now What?)
Marissa was a high-performer, used to being the “go-to” person for solving problems, exceeding performance expectations, and effectively leading key projects..  These impressive contributions caught the attention of her department head, and, as a result, Marissa was promoted to Manager after only 2 years in her former role.  However, the new role became a challenge for Marissa as she tried to figure out when to be a “doer” and how to be a leader. She needed to gain clarity about her new role and figure out how to manage her boss’ expectations, as well as those of her direct reports.

Strategies for making a successful transition:
The transition from high performing “doer” to effective “leader” can be challenging, as many of the skills that allowed you to be promoted will not be used as much as before.

  • Define the role: What skills led you to be chosen for the job?  How can you use your past successes to inform your managerial style?
  • Assess expectations: What is your manager’s perspective on what work, projects, and tasks you should be managing and which ones you should be doing?
  • Manage up: Communicate with your boss regularly to keep him in the loop about your successes and challenges. In Marissa’s case, we created a one-page update/agenda template for all regular touch-base meetings with her boss.

Leader’s Reaction:
Marissa was open to the strategies, but a little skeptical that she was up to the new role.  But, she was willing to try the approach.

Because Marissa’s boss still sees her as the go-to person, she has had to really think about what to take on and what to “push back” when she feels like she is getting pulled into the detail.  Frequent communication and alignment with her manager has been key, and they are making significant progress.  Marissa feels better about her new role and is seeing the results of getting things accomplished through others and not doing it all herself.

If you are interested in learning more about what skills are needed to advance your career, take a look at the Innovative Leadership Institute offered at the Colorado Women’s Chamber.


Brenda Hampel HeadshotAbout Brenda
As Founder and Partner of Connect the Dots Consulting, Brenda has taken her expertise in the areas of leadership, team alignment, performance and onboarding coaching—and helps organizations design and implement solutions that combine proven methodology with practical business application.

Brenda’s specialty is in the facilitation of leadership team sessions and discussions. Her years of experience as both a corporate human resources executive and management consultant and business acumen allow her to facilitate complex and difficult discussions by creating a framework, surfacing the necessary information and input, then pulling it together and creating commitments for next steps. This powerful process allows organizations to pinpoint with laser-like accuracy the areas that need attention so they can reach their goals faster.

Brenda graduated from The Ohio State University with a BA in Communications. She is a speaker and co-author of the books published by McGraw-Hill, Solving Employee Performance Problems: How to Spot Problems Early, Take Appropriate Action, and Bring Out the Best in Everyone, Perfect Phrases for New Employee Orientation and Onboarding: Hundreds of Ready-to-use Phrases to Train and Retain Your Top Talent, and, and Talent Assessment and Development Pocket Tool Kit: How to Get the Most Out of Your Best People. The Talent and Development Assessment Pocket Toolkit, also published by McGraw-Hill


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