I'm Doing This Wrong and I'm not Sure what to Change, How to Change it or When It's Time to Take the Disciplinary Approach

Questions on Management

kathleen travers
Manager, United States

I'm Doing This Wrong and I'm not Sure what to Change, How to Change it or When It's Time to Take the Disciplinary Approach

Six months ago, I was promoted to manage the project management team I was a part of. As a fellow PM, I had always taken a leadership type role by mentoring, speaking for the team, streamlining processes, etc. The team all seemed to be accepting my transition to the management role and even stated that it was an obvious transition. Since I've been in the role, I've provided more support than the previous manager before could, I've instituted changes that made sense for the team and helped simplify some of their processes. Still, I have multiple things I need help with.
I - There are methodology requirements we are held to that most of them fall short of. My approach to this situation has been twofold. First, understand why they aren't doing the methodology and either change a process because the reason highlights a valid gap or work with the person and their approach in managing a project. Second, explain why/how these particular requirements help them and protect them when managing a project. Then I set the expectation that these items need to be done and I will be tracking them. They continue to not do so great, with many excuses although there is slight improvement. How do I approach when they are not meeting the requirements and the excuses are just that - excuses?
2 - From a training perspective, if after training some people - and re-explaining the same thing over and over and over again - still don't get it... What do you do? Even when these things are documented? I tend to explain again. It's daunting. I think I should be instead asking them questions to get them to think it through and referring them to the documentation. I actually think of doing that too. What do you do? At what point do I let them learn from their own mistakes? I'm in healthcare - what we do affects a patient in the long run. So I find I'm always trying to get them to understand. And then there's a part of me that is completely exasperated at the person.
3 - I find there are situations where to me it's very obvious how to handle it. Or when escalation is needed. Or when we don't wait but instead act. And the team just doesn't. I get exasperated because action is needed now, and I take over. Or I take over in effort to help. This is wrong. I need to instead get them to think about what they should do - lead them to the conclusion. I think I'm de-valuing them and taking away their empowerment however, I'm only doing the take over when it's gotten too far and I'm finding out about it. I've tried to impress upon the team that they are empowered to do whatever is best for the right outcome. Make the call now - don't wait until the next meeting. Escalate if the vendor isn't responding. I don't know how to get in front of this so it's not always too late. And I need to have the patience to lead them to the conclusion they need to make. But I don't know if there's something else I should be doing differently.
4 - Some team members give me attitude. I tend to ignore it and maintain professionalism. One of them has repeatedly expressed how much I've helped the team and yet - sometimes he feels the need to challenge me in a condescending way. Most of me wants to walk away from management. I've been a manager before and did not have these issues. I know I'm better off learning how to do better though. I appreciate any responses, critique, etc and/or reference to specific articles in this forum for me to read. Thank you.

  Jaap de Jonge
Editor, Netherlands

In Management, One Size Does not Fit All...

Thank you Kathleen for sharing your situation. Thi...

  Ahmad Sultan Abdulla
Consultant, Malaysia

Start with Different Folks, Different Strokes

I totally agree with de Jonge. The program called ...

  Rob Thompson
Coach, United Kingdom

Look at Where This Comes From...

Hi Kathleen I completely understand your position...

  kathleen travers
Manager, United States

Thank you for your Response

@Rob Thompson: Hi Rob, thank you for your reply. T...

  Sreejith M
Business Consultant, Netherlands

Analysing the Root Cause

Hey! Kathleen Thanks' for sharing your experience...


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