How to Help Your New Manager Build Respect

Building a strong manager and management team is an obstacle you’ll constantly face. If this isn’t something you’ve been focusing on, put it on your radar now.

Management Goals.

A major goal for your business should be to develop a team around you that enables it to function while you’re not there. Preferably to function while you are away for extended amounts of time.

Building a management team takes an enormous amount of effort and understanding from you. It also takes the same amount effort and understanding for new managers who face a different set of problems.

Being a New Manager.

I was first hired by a well know corporation as an assistant general manager for their Houston region. I had academic knowledge and was immediately respected by others at the management level and above.

But after my six weeks of training I had trouble gaining respect from my employees.

You see, in a restaurant, reading and memorizing a recipe or procedure means nothing if you don’t understand the physical and logistical demands of executing those on a large scale.

Simply put: You have to earn respect.

A hands on leadership style makes a definite difference in this industry.

Today, I’ll quickly give some pointers on how to establish respect and credibility as a new manager.

1. Listen to your staff.

As I got to know my employees at the corporate restaurant, I found they needed someone who understood their plight. Managers working for a corporation are constantly pushed to meet budgets, deadlines, etc. They may have the best intentions, but sometimes they can forget about their team.

In independent restaurants, I found that employees perceived not being listened to as a sign of a disrespectful and uncaring owner.

Employees may not show it all the time, but most of them generally care about their job. They need to feel they’re making a difference. They need to see the difference they’re making.

Set and keep a scheduled time to listen to employee feedback and then…

2. Be consistent.

Make sure your deliver what you promise. You can’t say yes to everyone. That leads to spreading yourself thin, which leads to you letting people down.

“No” can be a valid answer.

3. Be fair.

So, if you’re going to say “No,” be fair about it. Don’t play favoritism.

Also, do what you say you’ll do; whether it’s to reward or punish. Make sure you’re fair on both across the board. Avoid special treatment. Recognize good work and individuality, but don’t make one reward more exciting (or a punishment more harsh) than another.

4. Work alongside your employees.

You cannot lead from the back, from a distance, or from a position of authority. Set the example by “showing” your team what to do. Not by “telling” them.

Especially during your busy times/rush. You have to be 100 percent willing to jump in and help (or to defend) an employee.

5. Communicate clearly.

The service and hospitality industry is busy, physical, flowing work.

There is rarely a time to sit and chat, much less explain things in detail. Any instructions you give need to be delivered clearly, concisely, and most likely while something else is going on.

6. Be humble.

If you make a mistake and an employee points it out, celebrate their knowledge instead of looking at it as disrespectful.

Also, this should be a “gimme”, but I see owners and managers still doing this. Do not embarrass or make your employees look bad in public.

“If they don’t look good, you don’t look good.”

7. Trust yourself.

Show trust and confidence in your team. But also remember you were put in a position of leadership because you deserve it. Whether you worked harder or whether you have the most experience, just remember you’re the leader for a reason.


What are some leadership qualities you’ve developed? Leave me a comment.

I’d love to learn from you!

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