Managing Friends

Updated May 2020 (originally published in August 2019)

You’ve just been promoted, hooray! You are now part of the management team and officially in charge of a team of your staff who were previously your peers, many who have become your friends.

How do you handle it?

This can be a tough one to navigate, however these 6 steps can you’re your transition.

#6 steps

  1. First make the tough call – loyalty to work has to come before loyalty to your friend–if it can’t, you shouldn’t be leading that individual
  2. Set clear boundaries and expectations- do not discuss work outside of work
  3. Be rational, fair and objective. Treat your friend the same as you would anyone else in your team while at work
  4. Remember: true friends won’t want you to compromise your work responsibilities; they’ll want you to succeed. They won’t force you to choose between friendship and work.
  5. Don’t confuse being liked with being trusted and respected. 
  6. And lastly, remember that being the manager doesn’t mean you now have power and control. It means you’re responsible for supporting the success of every single individual in your team. You are there to guide, support and foster your team to grow and improve.

Being a manager can be tricky, but there are skills you can develop, tips and hints that can support you in your role. Don’t feel alone reach out for support.

If you are looking for a supportive community of management professionals, coaching, mentoring or support we may be able to help you. Message

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