Q: I’d like to move into a management role. How can I position myself and convince my boss or a new employer I’m ready?
A: It’s a bit of a Catch-22 that employers prefer to hire people with management experience for management roles, making it tough to break into that level of employment. When candidates with non-management experience move into these roles, it’s typically after working in the same company for awhile, i.e. employers also like to cultivate managers from within their organization.
However, it’s not impossible to move into a new management position. To do so, I recommend:
Demonstrate mastery of your current role. If you haven’t been in your current position long enough, it may be too soon to be considered for management. Go the extra mile to get recognized and demonstrate consistency over time. This will earn you the right to ask for the next step, or it will prompt your employer to come to you.
Let people know of your interest. If you’ve been there a long time, have you expressed interest? Find out what you need to do to qualify.
Make sure you’re in line with, and that you support and reflect, the corporate culture. Reinforcing corporate culture is part of the management role so employers look for management candidates who are good examples of their company values.
Act like a leader. Demonstrate that you’re capable of managing others and look for leadership opportunities, e.g. managing projects, leading presentations and people. Ask for new responsibilities and show initiative.
Split your role. If you have an in-demand skill set, it may be possible to create a player/coach situation where you continue to perform your work, but take on manager responsibilities and oversee or assist other group members.
About the Recruiter
Frank Gentile is a 20+ year veteran of the staffing industry and an experienced recruiter. As a Director at Professional Staffing Group (PSG) Frank oversees the permanent placement division.