New Supervisors

Building Blocks of Supervision

Transitioning into the role of supervisor can be exciting and demanding. Discovering how to act with former peers whom you now supervise, learning new policies and procedures, dealing with subordinate issues and supervising employees based on their personalities and skill levels are just a few of the challenges that might await you. This can be overwhelming in the beginning and you may have had little training on how to be an effective supervisor but that is okay – you can learn.

As a new supervisor you will you have the responsibility of your specific duties, monitoring the duties of employees, and the responsibility of coaching and mentorship.

Making the transition from employee to supervisor requires you to develop new skills and change the way you work with others. As a supervisor you will function in four primary categories; mission and vision, performance, people issues, and problem solving. The key to success is to maintain a balance between them; without this balance tension and conflict may arise.

Four Quadrants of Supervision

Four Quadrants of Supervision

Mission & Values – entails establishing goals, planning, utilizing best practices, and achieving results. You have a greater chance for success if you involve employees in goal setting, establish and reinforce policies and procedures and monitor progress and celebrate successes.

Performance – involves defining responsibilities and work standards, setting policy and procedure, and documentation. It is vital to communicate to employees clearly and don’t assign tasks that you can’t or won’t do. Offer timely feedback, designate responsibility, and follow-up frequently.

People – leading, coaching, encouraging and resolving conflicts are common when dealing with people. Supervisors need to establish a tone of openness, understand their employee’s strengths and weaknesses, convey importance, be consistent and fair, and adapt their supervising style to employee needs.

Problem Solving – requires dealing with change, innovation, adaptation, and constructing solutions. When there is a problem that needs to be resolved it is important to gather facts, involve others, and use previous mistakes as opportunities to learn.