Featured Articles: Workforce

You Are a New Supervisor, Now What Do You Do?

Friday, May 12, 2017   (0 Comments)
Share |

Ann Hogan, Ann Hogan Consulting

Ann will be presenting on this topic at the Spring Primary Care Conference in Spokane



So, you’re a new supervisor.  CONGRATULATIONS!!!!   Now what do you do?


Your first day is here and you’re probably both nervous and excited.  Don’t worry, that’s normal.  You just want to do the best you can... but where do you start? 


You need to remember that your status in your organization has changed and you need to act accordingly.  The peers you had on Friday when you left are not your peers anymore.  You are now their supervisor.  Your relationship has changed and how you interact with them has changed.  Here are some steps you can take to establish yourself as a supervisor in your organization:


·         Respect.  You must gain your team’s respect.  You are only as good as the people you supervise. How do you gain their respect?

o   Establishing trust with your team;

o   Demonstrate integrity. 

You probably have had opportunities to demonstrate your integrity and your trustworthiness but those qualities don’t necessarily translate into your new role.  Don’t panic…just be aware that you need to continuously demonstrate these traits.  And don’t forget that you need to do this with YOUR supervisor/manager as well.


·         Visibility. A good supervisor (and good leader) doesn’t disappear.  Your team wants to know that you will be there for them and that you can be counted on.  STAY VISIBLE!!


·         Communication.  This is a two way street.  Meet with your supervisor/manager so you understand how the goals of your team support the organization’s goals.  Once you’ve done that, make sure that you communicate with your team so they understand how their duties feeds into both your team’s performance as well as the organization’s goals.


·         Meet with the individuals on your team.  Get to know them and let them get to know you.  Do this consistently.  Ask questions, such as:

o   What can I do to make your better?

o   What is going right within the organization? 

o   What can be improved upon?


·         Leadership.  A supervisor leads their people.  Sometimes new supervisors try to be the boss instead of a leader.  Ask yourself some questions:

o   What does management expect of me?

o   How does my position fit in the overall organization?

o   Are the goals of my employees clear and do they know what they are?

o   Am I supporting them in all the ways I can?

These are just a few questions you can ask yourself.  Knowing your answers will assist you as you lead your team and not boss them!


·         Expectations.  Once you understand how your team works toward the organization’s goals, set expectations of the team as a whole.  Do the same for your individual employees.  Once they have direction, let them do their jobs!


·         Monitor.  Once your team has received your expectations, monitor their work progress to ensure your expectations are being met.  Provide positive feedback when appropriate and constructive feedback as necessary. 


·         Honesty.  It truly is the best policy.  Be honest with your manager and your team.  Be honest in your praise.  Empty praise is more damaging than no praise at all.  Be honest in your constructive feedback.  Also, if you don’t have the answer to something, DON’T MAKE IT UP!!!  Just let them know that you need to research that question and that you’ll get back with them.  And then get back with them. 


·         Favoritism.  If you have former peers/friends on your team (and you will), don’t show any favoritism to them.  That is the quickest way to lose credibility as a supervisor in the eyes of your employees and in the eyes of management. 


Once you’ve become a supervisor in your organization, your role has changed significantly and you need to understand that.  Your view on everything work related has changed and become broader. Here are some roles and skills that you will need to master in order to be a successful and productive supervisor:


·         Goal setting – this means your goals that you want to accomplish as well as those goals you assign to your employees. 


·         Decision-making – As stated above, your view has changed and your decision-making must change accordingly.  You need to take into account much more that when you were a front line employee.  You must understand and accept that your decisions will have a broader impact on the organization and your employees.


·         Time management Your time management skills must be refined.  You have the same 40-hour week but the duties of your position have expanded. More people will be coming to you for input, advice, and guidance as it relates to their job duties.


·         Communication – Your communications will also have greater impact than before.  Your written and verbal communication skills are now even more important than before.  Value judgments are made as to your effectiveness as a supervisor based on your communication skills.


·         Motivation – You are now the leader for your team and the champion for the organization when communicating with your team.  Keeping your employees motivated is essential to your success as a supervisor as well as the their success.


These are but a few traits and roles you will be assuming as a new supervisor in your organization.  You and your fellow supervisors are the backbone of your organization and your effectiveness, as a supervisor will pay dividends for the organization and your employees. 


One last bit of advice…HAVE FUN!








NWRPCA welcomes and regularly publishes white papers and articles submitted by members, partners and associates with subject matter expertise. The appearance of any guest publication in our Health Center News database represents the views of the author and does not constitute endorsement by NWRPCA of the stated opinions or perspectives, nor does it suggest endorsement of the contributor's products or services.


Membership Software Powered by YourMembership  ::  Legal