The 4 'M's of transitioning to management

Change the way you think to handle the obstacles along the way

Transitioning to a management role for the first time is an exciting, if not nerve-wracking, experience. The good news is that a few evidence-backed strategies can make the process a little less stressful, David Brendel writes for Harvard Business Review.  

Change your mindset

When assuming a new management role, many people fall into the trap of focusing on technical skills more than what they believe are less-important soft skills. But this mindset will only serve to hold you back. Having a dogged work ethic isn't the only factor in management success; you must rewire your mindset and start from a place of positive thought.

Embrace mindfulness

Making mindfulness a priority will allow you to approach challenges with grace under pressure. Brendel cites research showing that meditation and controlled breathing have helped ease the regular stresses that someone in management may endure. Concepts embedded in Taoism, like the notion of wu wei, or "non-doing," show how important it is to be in the moment.

Take care of your medical needs

Good health is inextricably linked to effective management, so getting enough sleep, eating well, and exercising regularly are all necessary. Don't let medical appointments related to your physical or mental health fall by the wayside—you need to be in top shape to be at your best.

Find meaning in your work

If you want to transition to a management position, you need to understand your purpose in making that change. What do you want to accomplish? How will you make a difference? Determine your vision for your role, and you will have a clear path to success (Brendel, Harvard Business Review, 9/30). 

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