Managing the pressure?

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five2one
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Managing the pressure?

Post by five2one » Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:48 pm

I have begun a new job in a high visibility environment working with the organizations senior leaders.
Previously, I was more focused on delivering a product or managing a relatively small process in a sub organization about 3 layers down.

Now I am more about working with the senior leaders to manage their processes, communication, and coordination with the higher headquarters.
I am being deliberately vague for a variety of reasons but have caught a couple relatively small but dumb/newb mistakes.

While I'm perfectly capable of doing the job I was hired for, the environment and topics bring a lot more criticality and need for a very deliberate decision making process that I'm realizing I need to develop a little more suited for this environment that also withstands the pressures of some very delicate topics.

How have other managed the various variable associated with "moving up"?

BarbBrooklyn
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by BarbBrooklyn » Sat Aug 03, 2019 3:53 am

I'm going to be very blunt.

Your writing skills are lacking. I wonder how much your inability to express yourself clearly impacts your ability to do this job.

ETA: I apologize for my bluntness. It was the middle of the night and I'd just driven for 6 hours.

Taking a writing course is a great idea, especially if you can find one with a teacher who will engage with you and help you learn to edit what you are writing.

Jumping several levels in a corporate structure isn't easy but I think that you are going to succeed. You are willing to ask for advice and don't assume that your problems are someone else's fault.

Please keep working on this issue (getting your thoughts down on paper clearly, coherently and cogently.)
Last edited by BarbBrooklyn on Sat Aug 03, 2019 8:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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HawkeyePierce
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by HawkeyePierce » Sat Aug 03, 2019 4:29 am

BarbBrooklyn wrote:
Sat Aug 03, 2019 3:53 am
I'm going to be very blunt.

Your writing skills are lacking. I wonder how much your inability to express yourself clearly impacts your ability to do this job.
I have to agree.

OP, taking a writing course. Start with the business writing class the Gotham Writers School, it can be taken online. Spots are still available for the class starting August 13.

https://www.writingclasses.com/classes/ ... ss-writing

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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by TomatoTomahto » Sat Aug 03, 2019 6:22 am

Five2one, I agree with the two previous posters. Your writing is not good, but if it’s any consolation, it’s not the worst I’ve seen in a corporate setting. Take some courses and turn it into a strength of yours.

Good luck and congrats on moving up.
Okay, I get it; I won't be political or controversial. The Earth is flat.

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Sandtrap
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by Sandtrap » Sat Aug 03, 2019 6:43 am

Considerations:
(an actionable pep talk)

1. Treat it like combat survival. In this case, your survival and eventual, hopefully, dominance.
2. View every single day as a day wasted backsliding or "stying safe" while unaware that every "newB" is being evaluated every day under a microscope.
3. Very every single day as a day, hourse even, of opportunity to thrive on new challenges, to quick study what you do not know, to improvise, adapt, and show what you can do in front of others, and yourself.
4. Every day, you are getting either more confident, and developing a higher self esteem, or more insecure which leads to more insecurity and poor job performance. Confidence in one's ability to step up to any task and win is palatable to all.
5. You only have one chance, one day, to make a first impression. Therafter, you will be labelled.
6. Spend all of your waking hours studying and learning and working on what you need to work on. At this time, there's no time for daydreaming on a day off, or off hours.
7. Find a mentor or friend in the company, that won't eventually stab you in the back, that can help you, be your study partner, whatever it takes.

If you are up to the challenge of this new work environment and committed to do whatever it takes to succeed and thrive, then do so by showing the company, through action and tangible results (daily, look for opportunites and challenges) . . . then start tommorow morning. And, keep up the pressure on your work and on yourself until you get your personal ship back on course.

If you are not up to the challenge, there's nothing wrong with self knowledge. This is a learning experience. You can "choose" to look for another position in another company tommorow and walk away from all this with the certainty of what you "choose" to do and what you "decide not to do" for your personal health, etc.

* But, above all, decide and act. In this case, doing nothing and producing nothing but mediocrity is the same as self-sabotage.

*Read the Book: "Life Code" by Dr. Phil. (really)
https://smile.amazon.com/Life-Code-Rule ... way&sr=8-1

(disclaimer: my o2 based on one person's unique experiences. YMMV. Does not apply to others. Over-dosage may cause rash or hives. See your doctor before starting any intense self improvement program.)

Good luck.
j
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HomeStretch
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by HomeStretch » Sat Aug 03, 2019 6:50 am

Congratulations on your move up! Your company has confidence in you if they promoted you.

Improve your writing skills. Learn to be on point and concise with your verbal skills. Polish your professional appearance and demeanor.

Observe the rest of your colleagues at your new level and up. Learn from them by example. Listen more, speak less. Keep your personal stuff to yourself. Build strong relationships with them, your boss, with people at your level in other functional areas and with the people that report to you.

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Sandtrap
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by Sandtrap » Sat Aug 03, 2019 6:56 am

HomeStretch wrote:
Sat Aug 03, 2019 6:50 am
Congratulations on your move up! Your company has confidence in you if they promoted you.

Improve your writing skills. Learn to be on point and concise with your verbal skills. Polish your professional appearance and demeanor.

Observe the rest of your colleagues at your new level and up. Learn from them by example. Listen more, speak less. Keep your personal stuff to yourself. Build strong relationships with them, your boss, with people at your level in other functional areas and with the people that report to you.
+1
Great points!
j
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carolinaman
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by carolinaman » Sat Aug 03, 2019 7:05 am

A writing course is a good suggestion, but carefully edit your written communication with senior execs before sending to them. Chances are that will result in improved communications. Poorly written communications can severely affect your image with these people.

I once had a boss who was a former journalist and editor. He would often question what I was trying to say in my brief emails. I soon realized I needed to be more clear in my emails. I would spend extra time reviewing and editing those emails and he stopped rejecting my emails. In the modern world, people are often in such a hurry, that they do not take the time to make sure their communications are clear and well articulated.

warner25
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by warner25 » Sat Aug 03, 2019 9:04 am

Is this a change from a leadership/management role, with direct responsibility and authority for what needs to be done, to a staff role where you're supporting someone higher up who has the responsibility and authority? In my career field we alternate between those roles and many people find the change to be hard. In the staff role, it seems like the temperament, competence, and predictability of the person you're supporting makes or breaks the experience. Politics aside, being on the personal staff of President Trump, for example, seems like a nightmare. You need to be able to anticipate what the person will want and need.

I think it mostly helps to recognize and accept the differences with the roles. Someone told me it's being a small part of something big instead of a big part of something small. And you're not a decision-maker, just an advisor to the decision-maker. And you're just communicating those decisions to everyone else.

As to what others have already said, your third paragraph is a mess, but the rest of your writing doesn't strike me as so horrible. I think I've seen many people on this forum report very high incomes with worse writing skills.

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Kenkat
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by Kenkat » Sat Aug 03, 2019 10:00 am

BarbBrooklyn wrote:
Sat Aug 03, 2019 3:53 am
I'm going to be very blunt.
With a name like BarbBrooklyn, I’d expect nothing less! :D

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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by LadyGeek » Sat Aug 03, 2019 11:13 am

This thread is now in the Personal Finance (Not Investing) forum (career guidance).
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five2one
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by five2one » Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:23 am

Been a while since I logged on and saw this thread pop back up and smiled for a variety of reasons.
Some of the advice had merits but most was not useful.

I'll circle back for an update to help other internet searchers seeking to collect their thoughts and refine their leadership style.
My daily actions have come to be guided by really one idea, "acting with intention".

cashboy
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by cashboy » Fri Oct 11, 2019 12:12 pm

five2one wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:48 pm
I have begun a new job in a high visibility environment working with the organizations senior leaders.
Previously, I was more focused on delivering a product or managing a relatively small process in a sub organization about 3 layers down.

Now I am more about working with the senior leaders to manage their processes, communication, and coordination with the higher headquarters.
I am being deliberately vague for a variety of reasons but have caught a couple relatively small but dumb/newb mistakes.

While I'm perfectly capable of doing the job I was hired for, the environment and topics bring a lot more criticality and need for a very deliberate decision making process that I'm realizing I need to develop a little more suited for this environment that also withstands the pressures of some very delicate topics.

How have other managed the various variable associated with "moving up"?
yes, and I was successful. some 'general' ideas for your consideration when dealing with senior leaders and or higher headquarters:

listen more than you speak (and i do not mean that in a bad way) unless you are presenting.

when necessary, confirm your understanding of what they (senior leaders) want by repeating it back to them (in a nice way. ex: "so, you are saying that....")

maintain a professional demeanor at all times.

pay attention to how you dress so it is aligned with the people that you deal with - even something as trivial as well polished shoes.

keep your communications (verbal and spoken) crisp and clear; shorter sentences sometimes help.

provide an 'executive overview', backed by more details, in your communications(verbal and spoken).

pay attention to politeness. "thank you". "May I". etc

do not act 'overly familiar' with senior leaders.

show respect for their positions (even if it is hard to respect some of the people 'in' them :wink: ).

ask for feedback when appropriate. Such as, "did 'x' work out the way you had expected? did it meet your expectations?"

never repeat what is said behind closed doors, unless it is an announcement.

deliver. deliver. deliver.

never stop learning how to improve your performance in your new role.

be honest with yourself on what you have done well, and what you have not done well...

'stay the course' :happy
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ARoseByAnyOtherName
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by ARoseByAnyOtherName » Sat Oct 12, 2019 5:57 am

five2one wrote:
Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:23 am
Been a while since I logged on and saw this thread pop back up and smiled for a variety of reasons.
Some of the advice had merits but most was not useful.
Why wasn’t it useful?

olliema
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by olliema » Sun Oct 13, 2019 6:48 am

If you got lifted up that is because they believed in you and likely because of strong technical competence. That is awesome.

Top advice: be intentional in your leadership style (consultative vs. directive), have good situational awareness (listen a lot), and self awareness (know yourself), be yourself (relax), and always focus on helping others.

Don't claim to always have the answer but be willing to get it or create it. Conflict is part of the game and you will need to be comfortable with that.

Have fun at work. Bring a sense of humor and humbleness to the job. People are all feeling the same pressure you do. Have a laugh at it once in a while.

Ask for feedback often and at the right times. If you landed a deliverable, got past some milestone, etc. ask people if they're happy with your work.

If you are not getting critical feedback you are either not asking directly enough or the people you are working with aren't willing to be direct.

An executive presence workshop plus working with a coach, either formally or informally, can be a big help.

Annabel Lee
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by Annabel Lee » Sun Oct 13, 2019 8:53 am

I thrived in a similar role.

Some new suggestions:

- Connect with, provide value to, and make things easier for the executive assistants if you can. This investment will pay back tenfold. They’re there to make the senior leaders more effective and so are you. They’ll help you understand the lay of the land and will share important details that execs may not relay.

- To the extent possible, stay out of politics and just do your job. This wasn’t necessarily a strategy for me - more of a way of doing business - but it paid off vs. others who got dragged into spreading rumors, wasting time, and ultimately being less effective.

- Minor but important difference in communication at the top of an organization: use first names when referring to people, not last names. So it’s not Smith, McCaffrey and Johnson who got the project done — it’s Lisa, Ed and Doug. This nuance gets missed by many and can be a marker of who understands communication at an executive level.

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F150HD
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by F150HD » Sun Oct 13, 2019 9:09 am

first post is confusing (hard to understand), write it more 'Big Bird' if you want some solutions. :thumbsup

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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by goodenyou » Sun Oct 13, 2019 11:54 am

F150HD wrote:
Sun Oct 13, 2019 9:09 am
first post is confusing (hard to understand), write it more 'Big Bird' if you want some solutions. :thumbsup
I am not familiar with 'Big Bird" as a colloquialism or as an adjective or adverb. I assume it's an allusion to Sesame Street and a way of saying 'dumbing it down' or simplifying so it can be understood. Is that the context?
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ARoseByAnyOtherName
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by ARoseByAnyOtherName » Tue Oct 15, 2019 9:04 pm

goodenyou wrote:
Sun Oct 13, 2019 11:54 am
F150HD wrote:
Sun Oct 13, 2019 9:09 am
first post is confusing (hard to understand), write it more 'Big Bird' if you want some solutions. :thumbsup
I am not familiar with 'Big Bird" as a colloquialism or as an adjective or adverb. I assume it's an allusion to Sesame Street and a way of saying 'dumbing it down' or simplifying so it can be understood. Is that the context?
Yes Oscar it is.

Dandy
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by Dandy » Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:47 am

7. Find a mentor or friend in the company, that won't eventually stab you in the back, that can help you, be your study partner, whatever it takes.
+1
That would be a big help.

dknightd
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Re: Managing the pressure?

Post by dknightd » Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:56 am

You will either learn to deal with the "pressure" or you will not.
Does the "pressure" come from within, or do you feel external pressure?
Do what feels right to you. It seems to have worked so far :)

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