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The Making of a Manager: What to Do When Everyone Looks to You

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  4,952 ratings  ·  533 reviews
Instant Wall Street Journal Bestseller!

Congratulations, you're a manager! After you pop the champagne, accept the shiny new title, and step into this thrilling next chapter of your career, the truth descends like a fog: you don't really know what you're doing.

That's exactly how Julie Zhuo felt when she became a rookie manager at the age of 25. She stared at a long list of
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published March 19th 2019 by Portfolio
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Average rating 4.29  · 
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Mar 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: new managers
The management book I've been looking for! Whereas most management books are written by CEOs and sometimes stuffy authoritarian types, Julie Zhou writes this for the newbie manager with an accessible, conversational tone. Practical advice you can immediately put to use is peppered with anecdotes from Julie's baby steps in management.

I'd recommend this for new managers and anyone looking to see if management is for them or not.

I received an advance copy from the publisher via Netgalley for review
Elvina Zafril
Jul 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: pansing

Really love this book!

The Making of a Manager by Julie Zhuo is my first book about business management.

I’ve read one article by Julie Zhuo but I didn’t realize it was really her until my colleague told me that this is the same person.

I really am glad that I got the chance to read this book. The author has become a manager when she was 25 and had no idea what to do and where she should start with. Just imagine a lot of experiences she gained from the start, especially her mistakes.

This book reall
Feb 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Excellent new release! Clear and succinct delivery, undoubtedly useful for the target audience. I would look at it as a remastered High Output Management by Andy Grove aimed a the modern age new managers.

The downside is that is premised on a setting that is hardly universal. Most examples would resonate if you are working in a (for the lack of better term) ‘white-collar’ job, possibly in tech sector. But if you are exposed to managing teams in a ‘blue-collar’ environment some of the advice may r
Carol (Bookaria)
Dec 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is a great book for anyone in a managerial position or aspiring to fulfill one. It is also great for anyone working in a team or collaborative environment, which is almost anyone. 

I found the advice practical and down to earth. The author did not use structured terms but rather kept the tone conversational and approachable.

Highly recommend it for anyone working in fast paced, dynamic environment who wishes to be a good leader and team member. 
Apr 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars! While I’m new to the world of management books, I really enjoyed this and tabbed it like crazy. I know I’ll be returning to this over the next several months, if not years. It’s inspiring and honest, motivational and exciting. Let’s do something great - after all, as Zhuo ends with, the journey is only 1% done.
Michał Węgrzyn
Apr 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: leadership
Julie does not go deep into topics, but rather provides a solid checklist build on her long experience as a manager in Facebook.

70% or more is about people skills and process of building a team.
There are some interesting ideas that could be implemented.

Overall a solid book targeted to junior to mid-level managers.
Steven Ritchie
This was a 3.5 book. There were a couple chapters I felt were quite valuable, and many that I had 0 notes for.
Mar 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I admit I wasn't aware of Julie Zhuo before hearing about this book but now I am her biggest fan! Zhuo is the VP, Product Design at Facebook, having successfully worked her way up the ranks. She first became a manager at 25 and wasn't sure where to start, what she should be doing and what she should NOT be doing! As you can imagine, she has learned a huge amount from this experience, especially her own mistakes. This book is a really approachable guide for managers, whether you are new or experi ...more
Jul 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Could find lot of advices in this book for myself. Enjoyed book simpliest way how to talk about important things.
Manuela Barcenas
Mar 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I'd highly recommend reading Julie Zhuo's The Making of a Manager. It's the perfect resource for new managers and experienced managers looking to improve their leadership skills.

Julie's style is clear, fun, and extremely relatable. I loved the examples she provides and the illustrations that go with them.

The book covers topics such as:
-The true definition of management
-What to do during your first few months in the job
-How to develop trust with your direct reports
-How to prepare for meetings (an
Feb 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Every now and then I read a book that inspires me, this book is written in a very readable, honest and frank way. The paragraph I will take away with me is;
‘Learning how to be a great leader means learning about your superpowers and flaws, learning how to navigate the obstacles in your head, and learning how to learn. With these tools comes the confidence that you’re meant to be just as you are - no masks or pretences needed and that you are ready for whatever challenges lie ahead’.
A must for e
Simão Freitas
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I just finished this book and I have an urge to start it all over again. If I ended up taking notes, it would probably amount to the same number of pages as the book itself such are the great insights contained in it. One of the, if not The, most valuable management books I’ve read so far, given from the perspective of a person that grew and learned on the job. I’ve identified with so many situations of the book that it serves almost as a tutorial for my case. I won’t take all of it as is of cou ...more
Dmitriy Rozhkov
Jun 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
As you read more books it's hard giving them a rating. One should always drop back to a beginners mind when giving stars.

The book has certainly a fair amount of knowledge I've read before. Yet it provides a good gradual introduction step by step into a managerial role. It's not a comprehensive book, but rather an outline of milestones with some must know pieces of advice.
Joshua Hynes
May 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
As a new manager, I find Julie’s book was exactly what I needed. Thoughtful, insightful, and amazingly practical, Julie not only lays out the what and why of managing, but also the how-to as well. Rich with relatable examples and an approachable writing style, “The Making of a Manager” is required reading for managers–new or old–in my opinion.
Jan 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: business
This is one of the best books I've read on management - both realistic and helpful. I would definitely recommend this to anyone looking down the barrel of a new promotion or job transition.
Jan 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Extremely helpful dive into the realities of being a first time manager. I wish I would have found this sooner!
May (a novel reader)
Jun 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: not-owned
I feel like a lot of books on management and leadership come from long-time leaders who are kind of disassociated from what it's like to first start out-- which, let's be honest, is going to be the majority of the people who look toward a book on how to be a manager. So I enjoyed the hell out of Zhuo's candid, often funny, very insightful words on how weird it is to go from a peer to a manager, how to inspire people, how to gain trust, etc. I highly recommend this book for any new leader and I'm ...more
Jonathan Mckay
Mar 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: leadership
Julie Zhuo had a great career at Facebook starting from managing people at 25 to becoming the de-facto head of design for the entire company.

Making of a Manager covers both the autobiographical aspects of how she started as a manager at Facebook, and adds in a few frameworks, learnings and anecdotes from the journey. Like the rest of Silicon Valley, Zhuo assumes a given set of cultural norms, and much of her advice ends up being applicable only to flatter tech-centric organizations. Books like
Apr 28, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
20% company values & the People Portal, 30% internal training like Fast Feedback & Situational Leadership, 30% various Workplace notes on "This is how you X at Facebook", 10% company PR, plus 10% or less of her personal experience.
The book feels very Facebook and a little less personal, probably because Julie helped to shape its culture but was still at the company when she wrote it. Managers new to Facebook will probably find this very helpful.
Apr 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Definitely a good intro and advise to management

A really good book. Super clear and really well organized. Took several highlights to review at anytime. I'd recommend this to anyone in their first management position for sure (and to those doing management awful, in case they consider trying to improve)
Mar 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed Julie Zhuo’s The Making of a Manager. I’ve been a fan of her writing ever since she published her first pieces on Medium. It shows that she puts a lot of thoughts into her writing. The Making of a Manager is no exception. Whether you’re a seasoned manager or new on the job, I believe everyone should be able to get something out of it. The book is broken down into ten chapters, ranging from starting out as a manager, leading small teams, leading growing teams, and to specific ...more
Fay Wu
Aug 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Hannah Moerman
Sep 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
one of the best millenial management/leadership books. julie writes in such a fun way, and this book is filled with practical tips for leading a team + her own personal experiences + learnings in her leadership journey. some chapters i skimmed a bit because they're not relevant to me right now (leading a growing team, hiring well) - but the rest had me pausing to think about how i could implement some of what she talks about into my work. a great and easy read to come back to often, particularly ...more
Lucas Coelho
Apr 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What an easy and enjoyable read. Full with practical examples and anecdotes this book is a gem for anyone starting their management careers like myself. Will not only keep this at my desk but also give it as a gift to any friends starting their journey too.

Amazing work Julie, thanks for sharing in it with us.

Vuk Trifkovic
Apr 19, 2019 rated it did not like it
Disappointing. Way less insightful than her newsletter. Even if one adjusts down for experience, the poverty of ideas is shocking.

I couldn't help thinking that this is a great illustration of Monteiro's thesis on design responsibility, experience and licensing.
Jul 15, 2020 added it
About 20 pages in I knew I probably didn't want to be a manager (The book suggests that you should really enjoy talking to people to become a manager). That being said you don't have to really enjoy talking to people to appreciate this book. Like any of Julie's writings, it's about wisdom and not knowledge. This is not the first book to talk about team building, delegation, giving/receiving feedback, running meetings, etc. Julie's unique ability as a writer is being able to articulate her own ex ...more
Karel Baloun
Apr 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A management book that is Literature, with not a single dry nor trite sentence. Julie joins her best childhood friend, Marie Lu, as an acclaimed accomplished author. “Go, me!” Yes, “hard work and I got along just fine.” and she is now effectively helping everyone toward “better outcomes together”.

Not only does she make people better managers, but she makes the world better by promoting this kind of management! Full of empathy, honesty, respect… In the ideal world, Every manager would be like thi
Jun 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I think I found out about this book during a cursory search of books about becoming a better manager. Thankfully, the local library had it, and now I want to own a copy of it that I can underline and highlight and reference back to!

Julie Zhuo offers a perspective as someone who is not new to the management scene but also is not a CEO. Not that the perspective of company founders/owners/etc. is not valuable, but hearing from someone still “in the weeds” was incredibly relatable.

The book is easy t
Sep 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Excellent book for starting managers. I've stumbled upon this accidentally via Blinkist and after skimming it through, understood that it's exactly what I suppose I need.
This is the sort of manual of bits and pieces of what a good->excellent manager should do and accomplish. 1:1 meetings, clear communication, dealing with feelings of sort of inferiority, changes of attitude to and from colleagues and all the rest. Nowadays management is quite often understood as filling gaps in a company or cor
Dan Gibson
Jul 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019
I genuinely loved this book, which is surprising since a) I'm reading business/management books mostly because I feel like I should be the sort of person who does that and b) it's written by someone from Facebook, which might be the digital incarnation of Satan. While the Facebook part is still unavoidable, the book itself is super relatable, built out of practical, scalable advice, full of insight on every page, and distinct a-ha! moments on several occasions. This is definitely the sort of boo ...more
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57 likes · 26 comments
“This is the crux of management: It is the belief that a team of people can achieve more than a single person going it alone. It is the realization that you don’t have to do everything yourself, be the best at everything yourself, or even know how to do everything yourself. Your job, as a manager, is to get better outcomes from a group of people working together.” 6 likes
“One day, you hear someone shouting rudely at a teammate. If you do nothing, you risk sending the message that you tolerate this kind of behavior. Instead, defuse tensions in the moment by asking the shouter to calm down or help them leave the room. Later, in private, tell them that what they did is unacceptable.” 4 likes
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