Essential Skills for New Managers

To join my mailing list dedicated to new managers, click here.  It’s different than my general list (the link is in the footer), and only has content related to work, career, and developing skills to become a more authentic and effective leader.

Personal growth meets professional development when it comes to developing your soft skills.  Emotional intelligence and communication skills can be learned.  Technical skills will only get you so far.  You need to develop the mindset and skillset to successfully manage people.

People leave managers, not companies.

Managers make a huge difference for your company, especially as it grows.  Gaps in management skills interfere with team productivity and put culture at risk.  Morale sours, engagement drops, retention and staffing suffer.  Everything is harder when soft skills are ignored.

Become a more effective and authentic leader.

You won’t become more skillful simply by acquiring more information.  You must practice.  But how?  With support, guidance, coaching, and a safe learning environment, you’ll build these skills over time.  Learning by doing lets you develop your own effective, authentic leadership style.


Managing Humans 5-Week Program

The 5-Week Program

The 5-week program was developed after a year of working with over 200 new managers.  It is designed to provide ongoing support and practical learning — in a format that’s effective for learning, and friendly to your schedule.

Each week we meet in downtown San Francisco for a 90-minute group class.  We dive into a topic, practice the skill in class, and you set a goal for applying it in your own work life.

You get accountability, a group of peers to learn with, and personal feedback along the way.

Class is limited to 12 people.

The program is designed to give you bite-size lessons with time to digest and apply them — so you integrate each learning, and build your skills and confidence.


Learning Objectives

You will develop your self-awareness and communication skills.  By the end of the program, you will have improved your understanding and practice of these skills:


  • Week 1:  Boundaries.  Learn to establish boundaries that protect your time and energy. Be clear and assertive in a way that builds trust.


  • Week 2:  Presence & Deep Listening.  Influence others without saying a word.  Feel more relaxed and confident, no matter who else is at the table.


  • Week 3:  Managing Up:  Develop skills and strategies for effective communication with people higher up in the organization.


  • Week 4:  Coaching:  Learn how to have a coaching conversation so you can better guide and mentor others.  Become more skillful when others bring problems to you:  do you need to solve it, tell the person what to do, or coach them to find the right next step?


  • Week 5:  Giving and Receiving Feedback:  Get better at having uncomfortable conversations, and seeing your own blindspots.  Learn ways to respond effectively when others are hostile or defensive with feedback.

Anyone who identifies as a manager or leader is welcome to apply.


Class Dates & Times

In Person Option

The next cohort will meet April 2019 according to this schedule:

  1. Mon., April 1st: 6:30pm – 8:00pm
  2. Mon., April 8th: 6:30pm – 8:00pm
  3. Mon., April 15th: 6:30pm – 8:00pm
  4. Mon., April 22nd: 6:30pm – 8:00pm
  5. Mon., April 29th: 6:30pm – 8:00pm

Online / Remote Option

This option works best for students who can’t attend in person, who want flexibility with their schedule, and who work well with more independent learning.  You’ll get a weekly lesson (audio format, so you can listen without being glued to your screen), plus access to live office ours each week.


Class Location

Class meets at 225 Bush Street in San Francisco.  Exact floor and suite number will be shared with students who are accepted.  If you can’t attend in person and would like an online / remote course option, please request this in your application.


Program Cost

$   299 Online / Remote Option (register by March 22)

$   497 Early Bird (register by Feb 28)

$   597 Regular (register March 1 thru March 22)

$   697 Late (register on or after March 23)


Applications are currently closed. 

To join the Wait List and be notified next time this program is offered, fill this out.



What Students Are Saying

“This class was extremely helpful and actionable. I have learned more practical skills, that I am comfortable trying out, than any other management class I have taken. Thank you so much for all the great advice and I look forward to implementing my learnings in the months/years to come.”

— Sidney Browning, Student Community Manager, Course Hero


“I felt like an imposter as I became a new manager. Kim’s deep knowledge, inquisitive nature, and masterful ability to create a safe space in the class, unlocked a passion for management and a confidence in myself about my ability to walk down the non-linear path of management that I didn’t know I had. Thank you, Kim! ”

— Lauren Hay, Head of Community, WorkStep


Upcoming Public Workshops

I teach at General Assembly, offering public workshops.  It is recommended, though not required, that you take my Managing Humans:  Essential Skills for New Managers workshop prior to the 5-week program.

Thurs, April 18th.,10:00am – 11:30am at General Assembly in San Francisco.

Thurs., May 16th, 10:00am – 11:30am at General Assembly in San Francisco.

Thurs., May 30th, 10:00am – 11:30am at General Assembly in San Francisco.

Thurs., June 13th, 10:00am – 11:30am at General Assembly in San Francisco.

Weds., June 26th, 6:30pm – 8:00pm at General Assembly in San Francisco.


Want to bring a workshop to your company or team offsite?  Contact me.