I’ve come to realize that not everyone is made out to be a manager. While for some, the role is a perfect fit, others really struggle with multitasking and decision making.
Not me, though. I relish that sort of position.
When someone comes to me with a project to manage, I kick in to excitement mode. Organization! Scheduling! Decision making! It’s disgusting how excited I get about these things.
HOWEVER, one thing I’ve noticed is that not everyone is as enthusiastic about it as I am. Some people flat-out avoid making all decisions, which drives me nuts.
For example, we have been insanely understaffed lately and to celebrate our new hire starting next week, I treated my staff to pizza for lunch yesterday. Getting them to agree on something was torture. It wasn’t a matter of a “I want this!” “NO, I want THIS!” sort of argument. It was more of the “whatever” variety. It was free lunch! It should not have been that hard.
But some people have trouble with making even the smallest decisions. And choices such as what to have for lunch do not have any real consequences except for perhaps some indigestion later. But management decisions can sometimes have lasting effects. And people who cannot decide what toppings to put on a pizza are most certainly going to struggle with decisions with more weight tied to them.
But me? I eat that stuff up. (pun sort of intended)
I fell in to management easily. In my previous career, I moved up to an editor role in a short amount of time, even if it was just on an interim basis. The skills I learned there translated nicely to my first library job as a circulation supervisor. And it’s certainly helped me now as a library manager. But I think the thing that has been my biggest asset is that I have never been afraid of responsibility. And I think to some degree that’s innate.
When I was taking my springboard class in my undergraduate major, our advisor gave us a test to determine how natural our abilities were. Afterward, he pulled four or five of us aside and said we would probably be the most successful in this career because what we had was innate. It didn’t mean others couldn’t do well, but he said they would always struggle to obtain what came naturally to us.
I think the same is true in management. I think some people are just drawn to it because it fits their personality. Others can be good managers with some training, but the ease some people have would always elude them.
That’s not to say I’m perfect or always awesome at my job (although, let’s face it, the latter is pretty true. haha). I just know where my strengths are and I try to capitalize on them.