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Problems With Your New Manager? Reset Their Performance & Success With This Guidance

By Michael VanBruaene, Guest Blogger

After a couple of months your new manager is not performing as you expected.  He/she was apparently a good fit and clearly the best applicant for the position.  However you are seeing that their actions are not aligned with what you expected and wanted.  To address this challenge:

Meet with the manager soon to start the reset process

You should not wait until a formal review to address this problem.  Do it soon, there is too much at stake.  And more than likely their performance will improve.  When you meet be specific and direct, but not harsh.  Communicate the reasons for the meeting, state examples of what you are seeing compared to what you had expected.

Find out what the manager is experiencing, feeling and thinking.  It’s possible that the manager is not completely responsible.  Ask open-ended questions and allow the manager to fully present their thoughts. You must be an active listener and facilitate a back and forth flow of information and perspectives.

You should have no preconceived solution for the manager’s performance problem.  The solution will flow from your honest and objective discussion with the manager.  The end result should be a plan of action on the manager’s part, and possibly also you, to address the problem.  And set a schedule for additional meetings, at least every two weeks, to continue the discussion and review progress until the problem is resolved.

Considerations For Your Discussion With Your Manager

You want to make sure that in the course of your discussions with your manager you address all possible factors that could be affecting the manager’s performance, keeping in mind that the manager may be doing well considering the challenges and circumstances being faced. You just had not known about them.  Take into consideration these factors.

  • The position description
  • Reasons for the hire
  • Soft or hard skill problems
  • Communicating your expectations
  • Your support
  • Manager expectations
  • Organization culture
  • Organization challenges
  • Your decision making style
  • Decision making discretion
  • Getting to know staff
  • Effective on-boarding
  • Staff and peer cooperation.
  • Key messages to staff
  • Cabability as a manager
  • Position fit

To learn more about these factors and how to reset your manager’s performance, and other management tools,  go to

Michael VanBruaene was a KPMG Director and blogs at  Performance Improvement Services – Advancing Your Organization ( He can also be contacted at


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