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How to assert the boundary between friendships and working relationships…

Dear H2

I have recently started in my first managerial role, and am really enjoying it. The only major concern is that I am now managing two of my old colleagues/friends, and we're all finding it hard to adapt to the new dynamics of the relationship. Sometimes I feel really left out and wonder if I should look for another job where I don't already know the people I'll manage.

Any suggestions?

Kind regards, T

Dear T

It's a difficult transition time for everyone when one person is promoted, and ends up managing close colleagues or friends. It's good that you've recognised the issues, as you can now take positive steps to improve the situation.

You could try talking it through with them individually, and suggesting that you jointly agree some professional 'groundrules'. These will need commitment from you all, and will need to be reviewed on a regular basis. Also remind yourself and them that yours and their credibility is at stake, and that others in the company are likely to be watching how well you all handle it.

Best of luck!

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