Ask The Experts

Doing it right as a general manager


Recently, I got the good news that I will be promoted to become the next General Manager. I am really overwhelmed with this good news as this means I will be at the helm of the entire organisation. Indeed, this proves that my hard work over the last 10 years has paid off.

However, being a realistic person, I know this will come with new expectations and my current performance has to be upped many times from that of a departmental manager to a general manager.

I really want to show results as soon as possible. So I am asking you what I need to do to become a dynamic and successful general manager as fast as possible.


The first thing to bear in mind always is that you are now a leader for both the ‘inside’ and ‘outside’. You are indeed the ‘general-in-command’ for all circumstances; taking all your people through familiar and unfamiliar terrains, and facing expected and unexpected experiences of both the good and not-so-good ones.

Seen from this perspective, you need to have multi-functional skills so that you can manage multi-functional responsibilities. You will need to balance the deployment of scarce resources while you coordinate your role with every department in a seamless fashion and to the expectations of your shareholders and customers.

In order to succeed in this, you need to inspire your people to a vision and shared goal. Unite and guide them to take certain direction that will help them work well with scarce resources and overcome challenges while growing in their jobs and lives at the same time.

Powerful Questions You Can Ask Yourself

• What is your vision for the organisation that you will soon be leading?

• What values will you bring on board that will help you to do it passionately well?

• What have you learned in your previous job that you can bring in here?

• What commitment will you give to yourself and your people to make your vision come true?

Article by Dr Michael Heah, an ICF Credentialed Coach with