Career Shift: How to Transition to IT Management
Are you considering a transition into management as a part of your IT career path? Depending on your background up to this point, whether you’re still in school or you’ve been working in technology for years, you may have to cultivate a few new skills to ensure that you have what it takes to become great management material. Here are some things to consider when you’re making the transition into IT management.
- Know your own weaknesses. A good leader will be able to accept, and learn, from their mistakes. You won’t walk into a management job knowing exactly how to do everything so be aware of your own challenges. Once you know where your weaknesses are, you can work on improving them.
- Learn to delegate. It can be difficult to transition from a tech position to a management one when you’re used to fixing physical things. But you can’t always jump in and do the work for your staff. Instead, you need to delegate tasks to the people in your department who are best at implementing them.
- Work with a mentor. It helps to have someone to talk to who has made this transition before. Find a mentor who can answer your questions, give you advice, and be your sounding board. They can also share with you their successes and failures and the lessons they’ve learned along the way.
- Get to know your team. You also want to make sure you’re never treating your staff like robots or micromanaging them. You want to know what makes them tick. Learn their motivations, their career goals, and what you can do to help them succeed.
- Manage expectations. It is also critical that you manage their expectations. Find out what they need from you as a manager and do what you can to provide these things in the workplace. But also let them know what you can’t or won’t do which will keep them from relying on you to fix simple mistakes or make all the decisions.