"Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach/manage." -
Said by someone filled with envy and no comprehension of what "true" management is all about.
The Computer Factory 1988-ish
I consider myself very lucky to have advanced into management at The Computer Factory. Being fortunate
enough to be in NYC, I was already working in the top performing stores. However I did not let that stop me from trying
to be better.
My first store couldn't compete with certain other stores sales volume wise, so my goal was to always ensure that we ranked #1 in profits (percentage wise). If my memory doesn't fail me, that's what I did. Once I reached that goal my next goal was to make sure that for the next month, not just to remain at the top profits wise, but beat our own previous months numbers.
Eventually I was moved to a higher volume store location, one that had "major major" accounts. I merely acted the same as I always did. I did all I could to maintain, and increase, the number one position in sales, while increasing the "profit percentage".
I can't say from day one it was easy, nor that I did it correctly from the start. I wasn't even 25, managing people older than me, and even managing salespeople, who held such major accounts, that I had no authority to fire. This was no easy task, and I definitely made mistakes along the way.
Also, I suffered from what many new managers do: a suddenly overly inflated ego.
Somehow I pulled through, and learned along the way. My goal was to let my staff know, not through words but by my very actions, that I considered it my duty to make sure that "their" path was as clear as possible for them to to their jobs and make their commissions. That included allowing myself to bear the burden of any emergencies that popped up, allowing employees to vent out frustrations on me, etc.
In the end I think I did it right. I say that because my salespeople saw that I knew that my main responsibility was to make it easier for them to do their jobs and make sales. And just as well, that I had their backs covered whenever the unexpected popped up.
It's one thing to respect/fear the manager because of his/her suit. A good manager earns the respect of his/her staff regardless of the power of that suit. Hopefully I got that right.