Tips for first-time managers from Tacy Byham


Tips for First-Time Managers

Listen in as Dr. Tacy Byham shares what to expect as you dive into a first-time manager role and why investing in your team's growth is crucial to success.

Publish Date: May 7, 2024

Episode Length: 42 minutes

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In this Episode

Making the transition into a first-time manager role can be both exciting and overwhelming. In this episode, Dr. Tacy Byham discusses tips for settling in, as well as the leadership skills managers need to guide their teams toward meaningful success.


Beth Almes:

Hi leaders, and welcome back to the Leadership 480 podcast. I'm your host, Beth Almes, and our topic today is tips for first-time managers. So, we are going to be talking about the things that really surprise people when they first step into a leadership role. For most of us, I think we've reported to managers and seen them work, so it might seem like we have a pretty good sense of what to expect before we get in the role, and then you actually get the job, and it's a lot different than you thought it was going to be.

So, here to help us talk about easing the transition into your first management role is our very own CEO, Dr. Tacy Byham. Now, in addition to leading all of DDI, Tacy is also the author of Your First Leadership Job: How Catalyst Leaders Bring Out the Best in Others. As one reviewer said, it's kind of like the What to Expect When You're Expecting, but only for new leaders. So it's all that practical advice for the things that you don't know are going to hit you before you step into leadership. Tacy, thank you so much for being on the podcast today.

Dr. Tacy Byham:

Thank you, Beth, and so thrilled to be with you and the audience out there.

Beth Almes:

I want to start by asking, yes, you're a CEO today, but what was your first manager role and what moments or lessons stay with you from that very first leadership role?

Dr. Tacy Byham:

I'm actually going to talk about two because informal leadership is a way that we can all grow, develop, and practice our leadership chops. It's actually how we get started in leadership itself. So for me, I was the business manager of my collegiate acapella singing group, and we were the first all-women's group to record and sell a DVD. So yes, that dates me, but this was a big milestone. So, as a business manager, I was managing fundraising, the contracts, and the distribution, but we were a tight group of eight women, and I also managed the personalities as we worked towards our goal.

And I recall, Beth, that when I was leaving college and interviewing for my first job post-college, I was getting all these questions, and I frame them in star examples of how I was able to inspire the team, coach them, and even manage conflict. That all came out of this informal leadership experience. And I think it's important to note that no one taught me how to be a leader and handle these challenges. I was truly like a novice swimmer thrown into the deep end of the swimming pool and trying to keep my head above water.

Now let's contrast that to my first formal leadership job, which was at DDI, as we were launching a new product. It's where I truly moved from the management of the tasks and the projects to leading a diverse team in a time that was complex, time crunched, it was a global project. I was learning leadership on steroids. And I had support, though; I had formal learning from courses that I was getting at DDI that were coming out of our leadership group. I was learning models, I was learning tools, and I was also getting support from my leader and my mentor in the form of coaching. So it was challenging, but it was exhilarating, and the support I had for that leadership transition helped accelerate me and helped give me calm and, peace and confidence. So instead of sinking or treading water in that, I had a life preserver, I had swim lessons, and I will say I was set up for success.

Beth Almes:

I think that's such a powerful piece in the leadership puzzle that so many of us are drowning. We think we can do this on our own, or we feel like we're left to learn leadership on our own, and then it's really so much harder once you're in the job, and it's so much different than you expected. So, what do you think are some of the biggest surprises for people as they step into their manager role for the first time? What do they not see coming?

Dr. Tacy Byham:

One of the hardest things to understand is your personal impact as a leader. Now, when you're an individual contributor, your personality and your style mostly affect your own work, but as a leader, your own tendencies, they're amplified and they have a significant impact on other people even when you don't mean them to.

So, for example, if you're a night owl and you like to catch up on emails at midnight, you may not realize that your team thinks that you expect them to work at midnight, too. I can tell you that during one of my career transitions, I realized the impact of some of my own styles and tendencies, and so I was able to translate that to the team in advance. So, I told them in one-on-one meetings when I first took over this team, the way I work, my expectations, and my style as a leader. For example, one of those was I was a working mom, and I would dedicate my time after work to my son, and then I would get back on emails late at night and clear some things out. And I did not have expectations that they were working and responding at that time. I wanted them to know that.

Here's another thing I shared, though. I shared that I like to walk around the department, and as an extrovert, I stop in, sit down at people's cubicles, and say hi, and I would always ask, "Hey, tell me, what are you working on?" And I wanted to prepare people because I didn't want them to be worried. I didn't want them to think, "Oh, why is she checking up on me?" My question wasn't to probe into work habits, ask people how they prioritize their work, or be a micromanager. My questions were coming from a way for me to stay close to customer requests, to understand workflow problems that were happening in and out of the team, and to understand where you've had success on my team and where I could help celebrate that and amplify that for you.

So, my share with the team really helped them put them at ease as to my style, but I had enough insight that I was able to open myself up to that self-reflection, know who I was, know what the impact would be on others, and help others understand the best way that we could work together. And if they told me that style didn't work for them, I adapted because that's what good leaders do.

Beth Almes:

That piece of understanding yourself is so important, and as you're describing this story, I'm wondering that most leaders might not have all of the tools and self-awareness that you had at stepping into your job as a first-time leader, especially in a company that does leadership. So I'm curious, as you think about what so many... I mean, you interviewed, I don't know, what, hundreds of leaders for your book. Where did you spot that first-time leaders really struggle the most?

Dr. Tacy Byham:

Hands down, people step into leadership and then realize it was much harder than they originally thought. They're underestimating the stress that comes with that transition. And we did a research project a while back, and we actually looked at life events, both positive things like getting married, becoming a parent, getting promoted, and those negative ones like loss of a loved one or divorce. 

Well, we asked people to rank the stress that comes from these, and top of the list was getting promoted. And that's why there's mixed feelings when you're promoted. There's excitement, there's pride, as well as anxiety and stress. So it's a really underestimated transition event, and I will note, by the way, that we also had managing teenagers; if any of you are out there managing teenagers, getting promoted topped that life event of managing teenagers. Now, I know that's situational; it probably depends on which teenagers are being managed, but I think it's just a really salient way to bring that forward.

And so, what's involved that makes this transition so challenging? The things that are always cited is you are moving from individual contributor to getting work done through others. And the point that leaders need to understand is you can't do your old job and learn to lead at the same time. You need to let go. And when you don't let go of key tasks, not only do things fall through the cracks, but you're turning off your team, and it's going to lead to burnout for you.

A second thing is that as a new leader, you need to earn the right to lead. Particularly, this is important in situations where you are moving up within your own team, you're moving from team member to team leader; oftentimes, people talk about this as the move from buddy to boss. And your team may not immediately see your leadership competence, and so you're going to have to earn that, earn that right to lead over time.

Another thing, it's important to focus on your network. As a leader your network needs to be wider, it needs to be broader. Leading your team to success comes down to who you know, not just in your team but across. As a team leader, you need your network to be strong so you can influence and problem-solve across the business. You need to cultivate allies across the organization and think even beyond the organization to suppliers and customers because that's all critical to your success.

And a final one I'll point out is you are in a role where, most of your time, you're going to be executing your organization's key objectives. So, in consult and speak, we think about that as translating the strategy of the company into the actions for your team, but more colloquially, it's how to GSD or Get Stuff Done on your team and how to drive for that. As a leader, you need to gain commitment to the changes, to the focus areas, you need to establish accountabilities and you need to coach and support your team.

Above all, people are going to struggle with a sense of satisfaction at work when you become a leader. Most people get promoted, and we all hear this: you're promoted because you were the high performer in the department, you got a lot of work done, it was very high quality, and at the end of the day, that's what makes you feel accomplished. You got recognized for that because you did that good work. But when you're a leader, your motivation and your satisfaction needs to shift to taking pride in enabling others to succeed. This can feel hard to measure, and it creates a different sense of satisfaction, but it's really equally if not more rewarding than doing it all on your own.

Beth Almes:

Tacy, so much of what you're describing here is reminding me that when you've become a leader, it's a complete reframing honestly of how you think of yourself and how you think of your work. And even if people are listening right now and all of this is making sense, it's so much harder to do that, and I imagine it really takes time for people. So, one of the questions on my mind is, how much do you have to do all of this shift in thinking by day one? Does it happen over time? And really, how does that matter about making a good first impression? What do people expect of you right up front in those first days as a leader?

Dr. Tacy Byham:

First impressions are so important because they last a really long time. This question makes me think of a woman named Tanya, whom I met a few years back. I was facilitating a week-long leadership development session for an aeronautics manufacturer; Tanya stood up and shared at that point that she was a supply chain management leader; she was stepping into her first leadership job. And why was she promoted? Because she was a great individual contributor and she had a knack for anticipating things that might be problems later. So she was not only promoted, but she was really excited because she got relocated to sunny Florida, a real added perk.

And so she told us about her first impression. She told us about her day one moment, and she sat there, picture this, at a table with all of her team in the meeting, everyone was sitting around. She kicked off the meeting and talked about how excited she was to be with the team, how privileged she felt to lead this team, and acknowledged the unique role of the team in the organization. "It was going great," she said. "People were smiling, nodded, they were asking good questions."

Well, then she turned it over and started listening to the team as they did round-robin. So, team members were talking about updates on projects. They were talking about bottlenecks that they had, issues with vendor exploration and the progress that they were making on an inventory management system and on and on.

And then, one of her team members passed out a piece of paper and it was the team's monthly dashboard. It was a common report, and it went out to the operations team and to all of her peers. And when Tanya picked up that report, she shared that she said, "What?" She shrieked, and everybody was jolted. And she said, "This report went to my boss?" She said, "I went on to complain about the grammar, the graphs, the formatting, the data, the fact that things weren't explainable. I mean, I complained about everything." And then I said, "Who else is on this team? Who read this over before we sent this out?" Blank stares from everyone. They were scared.

She publicly yelled at the associate for letting the document out the door. She told us that she was labeled as a hothead, as a perfectionist. She got the nickname of Shrieking Tanya that, not only went throughout her entire team, but it quickly spread the news of who she was, the first impression that she made to everyone throughout the entire Florida office. So the reflection here that we need to recognize is she worked really hard against that first impression. In fact, I say it takes 20 attaboys to overcome that one oh snap moment, and sometimes that doesn't even help. All it took was that one moment, that one breakdown and it took her years to recover her reputation.

Now, there is a happy ending here because she was in a leadership training session eight years later, but that pain of that mistake, it was really fresh. But in those eight years, she worked hard; she won her team over, and they excelled. She continued to be noticed. And fast-forward four years later, she was promoted to a mid-level manager position in Texas, and she was really excited to put that reputation behind her, that nickname behind her and get a fresh start. So, to your point, it can be very nerve-wracking for individuals, and they're going to make mistakes when they step into leadership, but we need to give ourselves grace, and we need to give others grace because we're in a learning mode at that moment.

Beth Almes:

So, this story about Tanya makes me a little bit anxious, even just listening to it, and I can understand where she lost her cool because she was in a new role; she was being evaluated and knew that everything was going to reflect on her and obviously she handled it wrong, but people do that. As you mentioned, people make mistakes. So I'm happy to hear that it had a happy ending. I'm a little discouraged that it took... This is eight years later, and it's still there, and it took her years and years to process.

The piece of this, though, is that, if you stumble when you step into your new leadership role, if you make a mistake like Tanya did, how do you recover?

Dr. Tacy Byham:

The first step would be to admit that you were wrong. The worst thing to do would be just never even address it or even think about covering it up, which leaders tend to do. In Tanya's case, a really strong apology, whether in the moment or later in the afternoon or the next day, would've gone a long way.

She could have said something like, "Team, I am really sorry. Obviously, I'm new here, and I'm anxious about getting started on the right foot. As we work together, you're going to learn I care a lot about quality, and that's no excuse for how I reacted. I'm concerned that my reaction will make you feel like you shouldn't tell me about problems or challenges, and that's not the case. I promise not to blow up like that again." So, acknowledging the failure is critical, but blowing past it is not an option that never is going to work. And people remember it and it has more of a lasting sting.

So, what we need to do is help leaders turn those breakdowns into breakthroughs. We're in a learning mode, learn from our mistakes and grow as a leader. And I will tell you that these moments like this when you have them yourself, they give you your own powerful story to share with others as you coach them. You're sharing your own vulnerabilities, your own mistakes, and it helps build a connection with your team, it helps build trust in you and faith that they can make a mistake and they can learn themselves.

So, one of the most important things for a leader is consistency. If Tanya promises, "I will never blow up like that again," she has to be consistent and true to that promise, or else it's a trust breaker. Being inconsistent is one of the top attributes of a bad boss. So I implore you, when you recognize your own snap moment, oh no, you realize that you have deviated from that consistency whether purposely or not; you need to acknowledge it, you need to apologize, and you need to move forward not making the same mistakes again, learning from that and growing.

Beth Almes:

Oh gosh, I'll tell you, Tacy, that story really resonates with me. I did something similar in my first leadership role; this was probably ten years ago or so. I remember I was leading someone, and I'd had, just as you mentioned earlier, zero training, zero instruction on how to do this. I was stumbling my way through, and I remember telling the person, "We've got to get this done, we've got to get this done," because I had made a mistake, and so now we were kind of behind on things. 

And she was getting ready to leave for the day and I was like, "Why is all of this such an emergency right now?" Getting really frustrated with all the things I was asking her to do really quickly and said, "We can't leave until we finish this." And eventually, I just said, "Because I made a mistake, and I have to get this cleaned up."

And it was shocking to me how quickly she said, "Okay, we'll get this done." It was like all that time I spent trying to be like, "Well, I just got to get you to do this," and hiding the fact that, honestly, I just made a mistake, and that was why we were in a tough position. And if I had just said that from the beginning, we would've been in a far better place.

So that story you shared absolutely resonates, and I bet a lot of the leaders listening have something similar that happened to them, or maybe they're all better leaders than me and Tonya.

Dr. Tacy Byham:

I'll point out that vulnerability is actually the strongest strength. So you were trying to be strong, but when you paused to be vulnerable and apologetic, you actually were able to move farther and faster because of that.

Beth Almes:

In an instant, in an instant. And it wasn't purposeful. And I wish I'd had somebody telling me proactively of how to be a little bit different, but without that, I was just kind of stumbling my way through. It would've never occurred to me to sit to tell her I had made a mistake. So, in that line of thinking of being more proactive and thoughtful ahead of coming into that leadership role, which I had spent zero time doing at the time, do you have any tips on how leaders should be proactive about building their reputations, so you don't necessarily start from behind as Tonya did?

Dr. Tacy Byham:

Yeah, building your reputation is focused on how you build your own personal leadership brand. So, we all know that consumer products have brands, organizations have brands, but every leader has their own brand, and it's the reputation of how others perceive you. And you need to proactively build your own leadership brand image because if you didn't know it at all already, you are already projecting out what your brand is. So, if you work on it and focus on it, you'll project the brand you intend to project.

Now, three things to focus on that when you are creating your own brand image. The first one is to be authentic. That means be trustworthy. Make sure that your actions are mirroring your beliefs. And the importance of authenticity in leadership, it crosses cultures, industries, and leadership levels. You’re authentic when you're doing the right thing, even in difficult situations, when you're keeping those promises and commitments, when you treat people with respect, when you admit those mistakes, Beth, you're authentic.’’

But conversely, leaders can be inauthentic and that can have a debilitating effect on their teams that they are leading because you're inauthentic when you are blaming others for missteps. When you are ignoring tensions and workplace conflicts and letting those play out, you're not stepping into be the leader you should be, when you're taking credit for others' works. So you might recognize some of these things as things that you have admired in leaders that have been in your orbit or ones you've reported to, or even ones that you have said, "Oh, no way would I want to do any of those behaviors."

And one of the things that's in the book, and I often suggest people do a little exercise when they're stepping into leadership is do a T-chart. On the left, write down things you said that you'll always do when you become a leader, and on the right, things that you'll never do. So when you start writing that little list out and amending that over time, that's going to help you reveal your value and polish your authentic voice as a leader. So authenticity is one of three things on your brand.

The second on your brand is make sure that you are bringing out the best in people on your team. We already talked about it: As a leader, your success relies on the team you are leading. So, you need to know what motivates them and what interests them, and you need to foster an environment where people can develop and thrive. 

So great leaders encourage their teams to get out of their comfort zone, try something new. They trust in the team and they trust in the strength of the team. They are moving people to get stuff done by uniting them towards a common goal, and they're taking time out for those, not just the practical side of what aligns with work, but the personal side. What motivates the individuals on the team? What are their skills? What are their interests? How can you further that for them and get that to align with the work and make that an easier pathway for them to have success?

So we've talked about authenticity, we've talked about bringing out the best in people, the third, it is so important, is feedback. And as a leader, you're going to shape your brand and your reputation by listening to the feedback that is given to you. 

Now, we do a lot of work with succession. Who are the next-gen leaders that we should help promote into first-level leaders? Who are the directors that should move up, the emerging executives who might eventually join the C-suite? What we help them is understand and find the hidden talent there. And one universal derailer, when people are on the promotion track, is a failure to listen to feedback. They're brushing it off; they're not taking it to heart. And it is absolutely a derailer to career growth.

And I could even hear the voice of DDI's past president, Bob Rogers, who was with us for 25 years. He would often remark about a leader who didn't work out, who didn't live up to expectations. And one of the key factors was almost always their inability to listen to and to action on the feedback that they were getting. Whether it was formal feedback like a 360 or robust assessment, or informal feedback, you're getting from your managers, your mentors, and your peers. 

So, for all of us to work on our brand, we need to be receptive to feedback and know that we need to get out there and gather feedback on our own performance if we're not getting it directly. We need to listen to that feedback. We need to acknowledge our own shortcomings and that we're on our own growth trajectory, as we said. We need to be humble and we need to hold ourselves to the same high expectations that we're holding our team to.

Beth Almes:

That piece on feedback is so important. And I think a lot of times for new managers, many folks struggle with that idea of imposter syndrome, of “do I really deserve to be here?” Am I sure that I deserve to be the manager? Am I really truly, internally, do I feel like I'm the right person for this?" And sometimes feedback, especially if it's something about what we could do better, can feel like it's confirming that we shouldn't be here, that we're not really in the right role. But hopefully, for most people, that feeling starts to go away over time. They start to learn that leadership is not perfection.

But I'm curious, in your research and in your experience, is there a moment when people kind of make that switch to really thinking like, "I'm a leader; this is who I am now."

Dr. Tacy Byham:

Yep, great question. One of the things to recognize is that leadership is about growth, and growth is, in my mind, a flywheel. You're becoming aware, and you're learning that great leadership means that you understand and are learning from that feedback. You're recalibrating your internal report card on yourself, and you're hearing good things and bad things, you're learning. You learn what to do differently as a result of that awareness. You start to apply that skill, you see the impact on others in yourself, and then you go back to reflection and think about what it is you need now to recalibrate. How can I grow from this? And then this repeats like a flywheel.

So when you start out as a first-time leader, it's those little wins that keep you motivated. I mean, you'll learn leadership techniques to catalyze change in people, and then you try them out on the job, and they work. So, for example, if you have a conversation that you're dreading and you have to give some really tough feedback, you may have learned the STAR methodology to make sure that you're focusing on: what was the situation? What actions did the person take, and what were the results? 

And then you have that conversation with your direct report. Maybe that direct report used to be your colleague and now you're the manager. Well, you find out that that preparation paid off, that conversation went really well, they heard the feedback, you delivered it in a direct and purposeful way, and it was a way that actually was managing both the personal and the practical needs and that conversation. So that technique sticks, and you're going to draw upon that for your next conversation. So the key point is that flywheel will not and should not stop for your entire career.

And we don't come into leadership thinking we have all the answers. It's important that we always continue to move that forward. As leaders, we're always a work in progress. So leadership in life is full of those constant mistakes, learning and growing. And as that flywheel progresses, you're going to just start to have that muscle for leadership.

And you're going to have that mindset shift from thinking that my job is to lead to, to your point path, Beth, I am a leader and you have the passion for leadership itself. It's that passion that's going to help you face obstacles head on, passion that allows you to address complex changes that come your way in your career. And I'm a true believer that if you enjoy what you do, your performance will be higher, you'll be more successful. And when you find that leadership passion, you can inspire yourself and your team to greater levels of performance.

Beth Almes:

I'm so encouraged by that message of finding better happiness and finding your comfort as a leader. And there's so much of it that strikes me as very similar to other things we deal with in life. For example, parenting, things like that. I'm a first-time mom of a toddler, and sometimes when I look at more experienced parents who have multiple children, it always seems like where I'm muddling through as a first-time learning to, "Oh, should I make sure she doesn't get hurt? Should I micromanage this? Should I step in?" 

Other parents are much more comfortable about, "They're going to be fine, you just have to kind of guide them along the way." And there are so many analogies that come through with first-time parenting versus first-time leadership.

I'm curious, you've talked to so many leaders, you've trained so many, how do you think becoming a leader and as you start to switch that mindset of I'm a leader now, these are the skills I practice, how does it change you outside of work?

Dr. Tacy Byham:

So many stories. You're right, Beth. And I can feel you: the first time anything is where we want to make sure that we're getting it right. And I really saw how the skills you learn in leadership can apply at home as well.

Really early on in my career at DDI, I was a master trainer, and I met a gentleman in my workshop, he walked in the second day, and he told all of us that when he got home from work that night, he walked in to find his wife crying at the kitchen table. And, of course, he walked right up to her and said, "Honey, what's wrong?" And she shared that she'd been laid off at work that day. So he sat down, he listened, and she told the story that at the end of the day, she was called into the boss's office, and he held her hand, and he said, "Ugh, I'm sure you were so anxious."

And then she had to walk down the hall, sit down in the office. The boss closed the door, and he said, "Oh my goodness, I bet you were scared." And she said, "Yes." And then he said that, "We had to make cuts, and he felt that the only fair way to do it was to do it based on last into the department would be the first one out. And so people with seniority were keeping their jobs, and I was being let go.

But he said that I was a really great performer and he would be more than happy to write me a recommendation." Oliver said to her, "I bet you felt so conflicted. I mean, it was proud to hear that you were a great performer, but oh my goodness, it just doesn't seem fair." And then she said, "I had to get up. As I walked down the aisle from the boss's office down to my cubicle, all eyes were on me. And I actually was holding back tears." And he said, "Oh, sweetie, I know you don't like to be the center of attention. You had to be mortified."

And so Oliver said that he sat there and they talked and they talked and they talked for almost an hour. And he said, "I ended by saying, 'How are you feeling now, hun?'" And his wife took a deep breath. And she said, "Honestly?" He said, "Yeah." "I am confused, is this a husband swap or something? Were you taken by aliens? Who are you? You're a completely different man than the one that left the house this morning at 7:00 a.m."

So no, he was not possessed by aliens. But you would know that in the leadership training that we had done on day one, we had not only learned but practiced, and Oliver got feedback on listening skills, empathizing, understanding, and labeling the feeling so that his partner, and in this case, his wife, felt understood, trusted, valued, committed, respected. And so this was an epiphany.

And he told us all that, "I truly changed during the day with you because if this had happened a day earlier, here's what I would've done. I'm a fixer. I would've said, 'Oh, hun,' patted her on the back, and said, 'Here's what we're do. We're going to get the laptop out, we're going to dust off your CV, and we're going to get you back out there.' And I wouldn't have given her the time to process what she had gone through and help them move forward into a new way." And so he created a different focus.

So, truly, in our day-to-day lives, we are called upon for tough conversations. Beth, you've got a toddler now, but you're going to have a kid that doesn't do their homework, or, in the future, a teenager that's coming home late, or even people have conversations about finances with spouses. And all of those situations are where we as leaders can struggle to find the right words to directly address that challenge or to diffuse an emotional situation with a family member or a friend. So this is where the muscle memory of those leadership skills you learn at work can kick right back in at home or in your community.

Beth Almes:

Tacy, there's so much of what we've talked about today that is just... What's becoming so clear is how much leadership changes you. So when you're thinking about this, it's a promotion, it's stepping into a new role like many other jobs and things like that. 

And yet it becomes this fundamental change of how you think of yourself at work, at home, and it's so much more than really just that change in your salary and your title at work. And so I want to wrap up with a question that I ask all of our guests on the show, can you share with me a moment of leadership that changed your life, whether it was a good boss or a bad boss that made you say, I want to be more involved in leadership and do things differently?

Dr. Tacy Byham:

Yeah, it dates to my first job after college. I was on a quality assurance team for a computer company in New York City. So what did I learn from that job? I learned that I never, ever wanted to be the type of boss that I was working for at the time. In fact, remember I talked about that T-chart of things I always want to do and things I never want to do. This squarely fits in that never ever want to be this type of job, be that type of boss.

So you might assume that my boss was a bad boss with all of the stereotypical characteristics of being demoralizing, discouraging, or demeaning. Instead, no, she was a bad boss due to her absence. She never interacted with the team in any meaningful way, and all of us felt like just cogs in the wheel of the department. 

So what I learned is I wanted to work for someone who invested in my growth, not only in my current job but in my long-term career growth. So in reflection, it was that experience that changed my life. It got me into the whole field of leadership in general. It helped me discover my passion for helping leaders grow into the best versions of themselves. And for that, my bad boss out there, I am grateful to you.

Beth Almes:

That's such a powerful story that leadership is about growing others, not just being nice or not being nice or frustrating people. It's really a much higher level of growing the people around you. I'm so thankful to you for being here today on the Leadership 480 podcast and sharing these powerful stories for all these first-time managers who are just doing this for the very first time.

Dr. Tacy Byham:

Thank you, Beth. It's been a pleasure.

Beth Almes:

And thank you to our listeners who took part of their 480 minutes to be with us today. And I ask that you remember to make every moment of leadership count.

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