As is expected, I was very excited when I landed my first managerial role. It would give me more responsibility, power, and freedom to act on my own decisions. However, I soon realized, it\u2019s not always a bed of roses. The idea of being a manager and actually managing a group of people are two very different things.\r\n\r\nMy journey as a manager came with its challenges. I found myself constantly introspecting how to get through these challenges and how to do things differently. Here are few challenges I faced and how I handled them:\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nChallenge #1: Empowering, not intruding\r\n\r\nA common managerial trap I saw myself slipping into was the temptation to jump in and getting involved in team members\u2019 work and micro-managing every single detail.\r\n\r\nWhen my colleagues would discuss their problems, I felt obligated to give them answers instead of encouraging them to figure it out on their own. I realized a better approach is to support them but let them figure out their own solutions. Give them clear goals and hold the bar for quality where it\u2019s needed, but don\u2019t do the work for them. It might take time but eventually you are creating a team of doers instead of followers.\r\n\r\nChallenge #2: Delegating, not abdicating\r\n\r\nOn the other hand, I would sometimes get so consumed in my own work that I forgot to offer assistance to team members after delegating a task to them. A fear of appearing bossy would also stop me from proactively offering advice and checking the status of the projects given to themI soon figured out that was not healthy for the business.\r\n\r\nWe need to stay on top of projects and problems so that business runs smoothly. Give team members sufficient authority, responsibilities, and resources based on their skill levels and experience yet still stay in touch to make sure that they feel confident and competent in their jobs. An employee who feels less confident may require much more direct supervision. Another may not require as much management but may need moral support.\r\n\r\nChallenge #3: Listening, not hearing\r\n\r\nWhen I would see my team members\u2019 looking dejected, clearly indicating that something was wrong, I wondered what to do.\r\n\r\nIn this situation, I decided to use my boss\u2019 methods. Every time I would approach him with a problem, he would give his 100% attention to me as if his world revolved around my problem and it would become his problem. He taught me I have to listen with empathy. It sounds simple but it requires conscious awareness, strong intentions, and practice.\r\n\r\nNot actively listening to team members communicates \u201cI\u2019m not comfortable hearing you and you better get over it so that the work doesn\u2019t get affected.\u201d\r\n\r\nChallenge #4: Doing, not procrastinating\r\n\r\nHow well do I walk the talk? Doing what we say we will do is one of our company\u2019s values and as a leader it\u2019s important that I don\u2019t over commit and under deliver. The big challenge is whatever I am advocating, I have to be doing it \u2013 living it, embodying it, day in and day out.\r\n\r\nI have realized the more you strive to hold yourself accountable to your words, the better you will do, and the easier it will become to lead in a way that is consistently aligned with your leadership philosophy. Keep trying. Improve each day. If you do stumble, get back up, and promise to do better next time. If you\u2019ve been \u2018walking the talk,\u2019 people will believe your promise, and will fight their hardest to do better too, right alongside you.\r\n\r\nWe\u2019d love to hear from you too; share some the biggest challenges for you as a first time manager in the comments.