A Field Guide For Doing It Well

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Author: David C. Baker

New managers are often in a position not because they are ready, training and experience for it, but because they were performing well in a technical role before that.  This often leads companies to promote such people to a manager role where it is simply assumed they will know how to manage well also.  This is simply untrue and often the reason why so many people think that management or managers specifically do not know what they are doing.  I think it is crucial that new positions such as management should be trained for and you should learn from experts BEFORE jumping in and doing everything by trial and error at other people’s expense.  Of course there is always room to learn by making mistakes and there will be no shortage of those in a new management position but all the help you can get is important for starting out right and learning to do things well from the beginning.

This book is an excellent practical guide to help a new manager do exactly that, start out well by avoiding many common and painful mistakes.  The book is well written, and incredibly practical, covering every subject with quick advice and goo recommendations based on the years of experience of the author, David Baker.  Baker makes things very real by his honest assessment of what is normal in management, comments about many of the organizational struggles and what challenges you will face as a new manager.  I can say I’ve experienced all of these as well and Baker gives quality advice to help avoid them, smooth such problems out fast and manage them well.  His direct style of writing makes everything very easy to understand, leaving no room for misinterpretation and he includes plenty of wit and comments about the often laughable situations that need to be managed, that without this guide book, would be much more difficult to handle the first time they are encountered.

The book is broken into well organized sections covering everything from how you landed a management position all the way to being a change agent as a manager in your company.  Everything is covered in reasonable sections that often happen chronologically, starting with how to start as a new manager or managing for the first time, through more complex aspects that definitely don’t occur the first few months managing, but perhaps even years later, still important for the manager role however.

Everything in this book is quite practical and Baker writes it in a easy to apply style that makes things reasonable and understandable.  It’s book I will recommend to any new supervisors and managers in my work areas and one I can recommend anyone with aspiring management skills or who needs it for their existing role.  It will help you, no matter what your experience level, however, most valuable to new managers.  Its a great practical guide and easy to use for whatever topic is thrown your way as a manager.  I have read a lot of books on this subject and this one seems to cover the most areas with the best practical ways to apply the skills that many authors cover more in theory, and not in practice.  I hope you enjoy it as I did and will make the most of it for your management position.

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