Author Topic: Boss wants me to be a manager?  (Read 6314 times)

Oscar_C

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 76
Boss wants me to be a manager?
« on: September 21, 2014, 02:05:56 PM »
I spoke to my boss last week, and basically offered me the chance to run a branch office in a couple of years.

Believe me, I am honored by the proposition, but there is no denying I have some reservations about this.

First of all it is two buses away from where I currently live, and I currently work about 15 minutes away (walking distance).
The commute would be nothing, as I do not drive and public transportation gives me time to relax. And I like being away from some of the more seedy parts of my neighborhood.

Like my current position with him it is entirely commission based, however as I am running the office it basically equates to a massive pay raise after expenses (estimated 150% boost of current pay based on work performed) as I am the one who'd be opening the company

The problem is that I do not feel I have the required skills for this kind of thing. I also have no supplemental skills to make more use of the office space being provided
(I am learning them, but this was before I was offered the position.)

In short he's pretty much mentoring me to open a business in the same trade to him, along with keeping him on as a consultant, but I lack the confidence to actually commit to it due to a (possibly perceived) lack of skills.

wtjbatman

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1313
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Missouri
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2014, 02:11:36 PM »
You have "a couple of years" to learn the necessary skills, right? I don't know how hard what you're doing is (you were kinda vague about the details), but I imagine there are very few things you can't learn comfortably in a several year span.

Oscar_C

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 76
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2014, 02:20:12 PM »
You have "a couple of years" to learn the necessary skills, right? I don't know how hard what you're doing is (you were kinda vague about the details), but I imagine there are very few things you can't learn comfortably in a several year span.

I'm a tax preparer. Currently in the process of learning other trade skills (accounting, immigration, notary, insurance).
In addition to those though I need to learn some managerial and leadership skills, not to mention marketing. As far as I am aware though, it doesn't seem to be a skill that can be easily learned in a 6-12 month period.
In the off season (post April) I also teach tax preparation, and we tend to hire those we taught should they choose to work with us.
We currently do not have anybody in my office with extensive experience in the fields I am currently studying (except notaries, we have 4 of them, and accounting with 2).

The problem isn't with the skill-set though since I know I can learn them and by boss has been incredibly supportive in this regard (and afterwards I'd technically have more than my boss) .

I think I don't have the required confidence to run a business, as I know I have a few flaws from a business perspective

--By nature I tend to look for the easiest way out (delegating tasks to someone who is better able at handling them as opposed to doing everything myself).
--I get distracted incredibly easily (except when with a client, but I tend to rush with them to try and make the other party not wait so much)
--I am not a self-starter (I need an alarm clock and calendar apps to even plan my days)
--I suck at marketing (too scared of going door to door to attract clients)
--I tend to rely on my employees more than myself(most of my payment is based on the work others do)

If I could find a way to manage or circumvent these issues I would be able to manage this proposition a lot easier.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2014, 02:53:53 PM by Oscar_C »

tccoastguard

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 31
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2014, 02:41:02 PM »
The first two are assets in management. The first because you want to ensure the best people are doing the work and the second because as a manager of a store, you're concerned with customer experience and throughput equally. The third you seem to have mitigated with organization. The fourth it's something your staff will do. The last is normal for management. I don't see any downsides here for you and based on what you've said, this new opportunity may be right up your alley.

Oscar_C

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 76
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2014, 02:53:39 PM »
The first two are assets in management. The first because you want to ensure the best people are doing the work and the second because as a manager of a store, you're concerned with customer experience and throughput equally. The third you seem to have mitigated with organization. The fourth it's something your staff will do. The last is normal for management. I don't see any downsides here for you and based on what you've said, this new opportunity may be right up your alley.

That's a bit of a relief, I'm so used to being an employee that the change to manager is still a bit jarring (currently managing the students that are to be hired for next tax season, and most troubleshooting would be going through me).

It seems that all that is left is finding quality people. I know that interviews and resumes are important, but is there a more effective way of identifying qualified associates to hire. Are there any books/other options that could help me in this regard. From what I've heard, college teaches to be a good employee, not employer.

tccoastguard

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 31
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2014, 02:55:45 PM »
Learning how to be a good manager is largely done via experience. Your current boss can help because he's made his mistakes and will guide you around them.

Oscar_C

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 76
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2014, 03:08:28 PM »
Learning how to be a good manager is largely done via experience. Your current boss can help because he's made his mistakes and will guide you around them.

As much as I respect and admire him, he does certain thing which I feel are counterproductive to his work (these might be age related, he's in his 70's).
He intends on improving on them, with some support from his daughter (the other accountant on hand)

-- Tends to spend too much time at the office.
------ I like his dedication, but at his age it might be bad for his health, not only that but it leaves him really burned out at the end of the day.
-- He is too accommodating to his clients/employees
------ He has a tendency of getting take advantage of by the workers at his 1st branch office along with the more wily clients.
-- He cannot partition his time effectively.
------ He spends so much time one one client that he sometimes ignores the rest of them trying to please one.

He's an excellent person and motivator but he tends to get taken advantage of for being a nice guy.

frugaliknowit

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1671
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2014, 04:07:29 PM »
Go for it!!  You're lucky to have this opportunity.  So many folks are stuck in the mud.  You have a mentor who wants to support you!!  That is priceless, congratulations!

wtjbatman

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1313
  • Age: 36
  • Location: Missouri
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #8 on: September 21, 2014, 04:35:55 PM »
We can't give you the confidence you need, but we can definitely point out that some of your supposed "weaknesses" may actually be strengths, especially in that new role you have been offered. Don't turn down this opportunity unless you are absolutely sure it's not what you want to do. Otherwise, accept it, then get yourself as ready as possible to succeed.

mozar

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3001
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2014, 07:36:51 PM »
And don't worry about what your boss does. As long as your boss doesn't prevent you from getting work done.

Oscar_C

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 76
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #10 on: September 21, 2014, 08:08:41 PM »
And don't worry about what your boss does. As long as your boss doesn't prevent you from getting work done.

I'm just worried that he's getting taken advantage of.

As for getting work done, I can do it however I'd like as long as the results are met.

domustachesgrowinhouston

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 109
  • Location: Colorado Springs
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #11 on: September 21, 2014, 09:21:34 PM »
Sounds to me like you could do just fine. The hardest part for me in the transition was learning to let go and quit trying to do evrything myself (can you say micromanagement?). Couple points ive picked up over the years if they can help you, or anyone else i suppose:

Never mess with a persons food mail or money. That one came from the military, but the principles the same anywhere. If you have an employee that has a pay problem it needs to be your number one, debt emergency level priority.

Delegate, delegate, delegate. If you find yourself doing something yourself, your first thought needs to be, "who can i develop to be able to do this?"  Dont hoard information or try to block your employees development. Basically you should be trying to work yourself out of a job, and developing at least one person to take your job.

Dont be a clock watcher. If you find someone that can do the job in 6 hours instead of 8, reward them, dont punish them.

Learn to like hearing problems. Everyone needs to vent, including managers. As a manager listening to it becomes your priviledge.  Let people know they can bring you problems. Dont solve them though, let them do that.  They will come up with solutions that work better for their problems than you can.  Before you know it you'll be reminiscing about the good old days when people came to you with problems but now they just solve them themselves. Of course this doesnt apply to HR problems. Those need to be addressed in the same manner as pay problems.

Give lots of positive reinforcement. Having a good day?  Like the way something got done?  Tell them. A lot of managers just dont say anything until something goes wrong (or at least the manager thinks so) and than all they say is negative.  Make a habit of telling people what you like.  Theyll start doing it too and then suddenly you end up with a positive work environment.

Hmmm... Well i guess ill wrap it up there until the book comes out. Good luck and dont worry about the confidence, it comes in time.


Oscar_C

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 76
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #12 on: September 21, 2014, 11:17:20 PM »
Sounds to me like you could do just fine. The hardest part for me in the transition was learning to let go and quit trying to do evrything myself (can you say micromanagement?). Couple points ive picked up over the years if they can help you, or anyone else i suppose:

Never mess with a persons food mail or money. That one came from the military, but the principles the same anywhere. If you have an employee that has a pay problem it needs to be your number one, debt emergency level priority.

Can you define this a bit more clearly for me?


Delegate, delegate, delegate. If you find yourself doing something yourself, your first thought needs to be, "who can i develop to be able to do this?"  Dont hoard information or try to block your employees development. Basically you should be trying to work yourself out of a job, and developing at least one person to take your job.

I do not like doing work that much, as noted above I am lazy normally, delegating should not be an issue

Dont be a clock watcher. If you find someone that can do the job in 6 hours instead of 8, reward them, dont punish them.

All work is commission based not hourly, this applies perfectly well in my scenario

Learn to like hearing problems. Everyone needs to vent, including managers. As a manager listening to it becomes your priviledge.  Let people know they can bring you problems. Dont solve them though, let them do that.  They will come up with solutions that work better for their problems than you can.  Before you know it you'll be reminiscing about the good old days when people came to you with problems but now they just solve them themselves. Of course this doesnt apply to HR problems. Those need to be addressed in the same manner as pay problems.

Already somewhat experienced in this but on a personal level, not a professional level.

Give lots of positive reinforcement. Having a good day?  Like the way something got done?  Tell them. A lot of managers just dont say anything until something goes wrong (or at least the manager thinks so) and than all they say is negative.  Make a habit of telling people what you like.  Theyll start doing it too and then suddenly you end up with a positive work environment.

No reason to be negative. It really kills productivity.

Hmmm... Well i guess ill wrap it up there until the book comes out. Good luck and dont worry about the confidence, it comes in time.

Teaching did give me a big boost in confidence (along with a more active lifestyle), so hopefully in that time I can be much more so.

RyanAtTanagra

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1137
  • Location: SF Bay, CA
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #13 on: September 22, 2014, 10:57:05 AM »
Something I try to do that has served me well so far in my career is getting in over my head.  You'll never learn faster, and even if you fail you'll still come out with a crash course of experience and knowledge.  Also, 150% bump in pay?  As in, if you make 50k now that would be 125k?  You won't get too many chances for something like that.

domustachesgrowinhouston

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 109
  • Location: Colorado Springs
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #14 on: September 22, 2014, 01:33:15 PM »

Never mess with a persons food mail or money. That one came from the military, but the principles the same anywhere. If you have an employee that has a pay problem it needs to be your number one, debt emergency level priority.

Can you define this a bit more clearly for me?

Certainly.  Like I say, the food, mail and money bit I learned in the military - on deployments all food, mail, and money came through the Army.  It was an adage to remind sergeants that soldiers with personal problems don't perform well.  The same principle applies anywhere, though in your line of work you probably won't have to worry about food or mail so much.  But the basic premise is that if an employee is consumed with a personal problem, they will not be focused on the task at hand.  If you have an employee with a payroll problem (payroll messed up their check or they didn't get a check), you need to work to help them get it corrected.  It will get them back on task and also really show your support for your employees (I'm assuming you will be supportive of them :) ).  It can apply in other areas as well, depending on your work scenario and what's allowable in your company.  Giving employees time off to tend to sick or hospitalized relatives, for example.

Oscar_C

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 76
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #15 on: September 22, 2014, 06:31:01 PM »

Never mess with a persons food mail or money. That one came from the military, but the principles the same anywhere. If you have an employee that has a pay problem it needs to be your number one, debt emergency level priority.

Can you define this a bit more clearly for me?

Certainly.  Like I say, the food, mail and money bit I learned in the military - on deployments all food, mail, and money came through the Army.  It was an adage to remind sergeants that soldiers with personal problems don't perform well.  The same principle applies anywhere, though in your line of work you probably won't have to worry about food or mail so much.  But the basic premise is that if an employee is consumed with a personal problem, they will not be focused on the task at hand.  If you have an employee with a payroll problem (payroll messed up their check or they didn't get a check), you need to work to help them get it corrected.  It will get them back on task and also really show your support for your employees (I'm assuming you will be supportive of them :) ).  It can apply in other areas as well, depending on your work scenario and what's allowable in your company.  Giving employees time off to tend to sick or hospitalized relatives, for example.

Understood! The aphorism just threw me off because I didn't understand the meaning behind it.

Something I try to do that has served me well so far in my career is getting in over my head.  You'll never learn faster, and even if you fail you'll still come out with a crash course of experience and knowledge.  Also, 150% bump in pay?  As in, if you make 50k now that would be 125k?  You won't get too many chances for something like that.

That's really more of an estimate but it goes like this.

I currently make 25% of all I charge for services.

In said office I pay to others for their 25% while the other 75% remains for business expenses and my pay

I will be hiring about 10 people at that area.

Based on a group average, the company (before expenses but after commissions paid) makes 750% (of all services rendered)


After subtracting for expenses and supplies, as a sole proprietor the rest goes to me.

From 75% of services rendered  75  75%
Times amount of employees       10   750%
Divided by MY average income    25   30

The business income is roughly 30 times of what I make alone (excluding expenses and optimum efficiency).

This is only an estimate and I want this outline challenged so I can make corrections to it.

« Last Edit: September 22, 2014, 09:58:54 PM by Oscar_C »

Phil_Moore

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 70
  • Location: London, UK
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2014, 02:57:58 AM »
If you’re a fan of the 80-20 rule, then I would personally say that most of the 20% is covered by a) recruiting well and b) don't be a dick.  If you hire enthusiastic, good quality people then you just set the goals (and to some extent tone) and zoom, away it goes.  I wouldn't stress too much about it to be honest. I think people make management out to be really difficult but, unless for some reason you have no control over recruitment, I'm not convinced this is true.

domustachesgrowinhouston

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 109
  • Location: Colorado Springs
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #17 on: September 24, 2014, 02:11:32 PM »
I've just begun to apply the Pareto Principle to my work.  Amazing!  Less work, more results.

DollarsAndDissonance

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 43
  • Location: Pacific Northwest, USA
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #18 on: September 24, 2014, 03:04:11 PM »
Go for it, absolutely.  You'll learn the most new skills in a position where you don't feel entirely comfortable.  The upside is higher pay, new skills, more responsibility, and better career prospects when you leave.  The downside might be that you fail, in which case, what's the worst that will happen?  Maybe you could have your old position back; more likely, you'll have learned a ton and will have a more impressive resume to find a great job somewhere else.

Chrissy

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 945
  • Age: 42
  • Location: Chicago
Re: Boss wants me to be a manager?
« Reply #19 on: September 24, 2014, 09:00:12 PM »
Your first concern was that you'd have to take 2 buses to work, instead of walking.  Since you're getting a massive pay raise, could you afford to live close to the new branch?