Ready or Not? Do I Really Want That Management Gig?

You’re the best at what you do. You’re a technical genius. You skip to work. And now you’re feeling pressured to move to the next level. You’re honored, and humbled. It would mean more money.

But, you see what your boss goes through. All those people problems. Questions of job security make you queasy.

You are not alone.

Ready, Set Go, Management Here I Come

 A few signs you may be ready


  • believe in the organization’s mission and values
  • are the go-to guy for your peers
  • always fill in when the boss is away
  • find filling-in fulfilling
  • ask great questions
  • have a vision
  • are fired up
  • enjoy inspiring
  • want to make a difference
  • want others to succeed
  • you’re scared (that’s okay)
  • ?

Oh, No, This is Not For Me

Some signs it’s not the time


  • want them to do it your way
  • disagree with senior leadership most of the time
  • find helping a hassle
  • are most attracted to the money
  • dread filling in
  • LOVE the technical parts of the job
  • hate stress
  • crave affirmation
  • detest meetings
  • need a fixed schedule
  • abhor change
  • ?
Posted in Career & Learning and tagged , , , , .

Karin Hurt

Karin Hurt, Founder of Let’s Grow Leaders, helps leaders around the world achieve breakthrough results, without losing their soul. A former Verizon Wireless executive, she has over two decades of experience in sales, customer service, and HR. She was named on Inc's list of 100 Great Leadership Speakers and American Management Association's 50 Leaders to Watch. She’s the author of several books: Courageous Cultures: How to Build Teams of Micro-Innovators, Problem Solvers, and Customer Advocates (Harper Collins Summer 2020), Winning Well: A Manager's Guide to Getting Results-Without Losing Your Soul, Overcoming an Imperfect Boss, and Glowstone Peak.


  1. If you find yourself asking questions, that nobody else likes to ask, and you’re ready and willing, the next rung up the ladder is for you.

    If it stresses you out, keep doing what you’re doing and chill.

  2. This is such a fun topic. I completely agree with Steve, asking lots of questions is a sign you are ready. I call it “being really Nosey”, just to keep it light. Conversely, you are NOT ready if you want to move away from the front line and you mind getting Tactical. Great Managers get their hands dirty too sometimes and stay connected. My favorite from the “Ready” list above is without a doubt, “FIRED-UP”! Leaders don’t mind if it’s Friday or Monday (TGIM), we skip any day!

  3. Nice post, Karin. Let me suggest three specific questions you should be able to answer “yes” to that indicate whether you will do a good job in a boss’s role and enjoy it. I’m assuming that a person will answer them based on experience “filling in” or in temporary leadership roles.

    Are you willing to make decisions? Think of some examples.

    Are you willing to confront others about poor performance or unacceptable behavior? Examples?

    Here’s the big one. Do you like helping others succeed?

  4. What if I have stuff from both lists? For instance, I’m the go-to person and I’m okay with that, but I don’t get along with stress very much.

  5. Louise, great question! I am sure we all have stuff from both lists from time to time. Which list felt more like you in the aggregate? What brings you the most joy… accomplishing something on your own, or empowering the success of others?

    I also like Wally Bock’s 3 questions from above.

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