So You Just Got Promoted to Be a Wells Fargo Manager – Now What?

wells fargo manager

Landing a promotion to Wells Fargo manager is an incredibly exciting accomplishment, but it can also be overwhelming, especially if you aren’t properly trained for the position. Globoforce reports that 93% of managers need additional leadership training,1 setting both the leaders and their Wells Fargo team members up for a difficult transition.  

As a firm that works with many Wells Fargo employees, Calamita Wealth Management strives to provide comprehensive resources for your whole life, not just your finances. If you are a new Wells Fargo employee with a promotion to manager role, we want to say congratulations! Here are some tips to make the transition a little less nerve-wracking and a little more exciting. 

1.) Be Aware of Your Mindset as a Wells Fargo Manager

Now that you’ve accepted a management role as a Wells Fargo Manager, you’ll need to shift your mindset. Think of yourself as a leader, not a manager. Though the Wells Fargo employee handbook may refer to you as a “manager,” there’s a huge difference between the two.  

A manager is task-focused, ensuring that processes and core job duties are completed in an efficient way. A leader, on the other hand, is people-focused, inspiring and uplifting those around them in order to promote teamwork, ownership, and loyalty to the company. Think back to when you were working in a more junior role; which people did you gravitate toward and want to work with? Was it the task-focused managers or the people-focused leaders? Keep this in mind as you start to establish your role in management and build connections with the team members who report to you. 

2.) Leaders Create Leaders 

After shifting your mindset to that of a leader, you can begin to see those around you as other potential leaders. They are not just Wells Fargo employees or subordinates; rather, they’re unique individuals with the capacity to grow and lead. Empowering your team members to see themselves as leaders will help them gain confidence in their role and take ownership of their job duties. It also helps reduce the number of mistakes made and allowing you to fully delegate tasks rather than micromanage them.  

If your team members see you as their “boss” or a person who has to sign off and green-light every decision, there’ll be no room for them to take ownership over their role. At that point, you might as well do every job because your Wells Fargo team members will always be asking you for validation and permission for every decision they make. Avoid this micromanagement trap by building your team members’ confidence in their own ability to do their jobs. 

3.) Cultivate Compassion & Empathy 

If you went to college thinking business and finance was the way to go, you weren’t alone. But as the age of artificial intelligence (AI) continues to make certain roles obsolete, you will need to set yourself apart from the stiff and mechanical ways of interacting with both your clients and Wells Fargo team members. Anyone can open a bank account online through a fully automated process, or invest with entirely robo-advising teams. But humans are social creatures and inherently crave the feel-good emotions that come from genuine connections with other people. 

Cultivating compassion and empathy and leading with those qualities is a great way to build trust in your role and earn brand loyalty, especially as Wells Fargo employees are returning to the office. The leaders of the future are shifting their focus to right-brain ways of thinking, choosing MFAs (Master of Fine Arts) over MBAs (Master of Business Administration) and people-focused approaches over task-focused processes (as mentioned in #1). Are you naturally a left-brained thinker, with a tendency toward analytical, logical, and unemotional thinking? Although there’s nothing wrong with that, you will have to learn to lead with the right brain and cultivate emotional intelligence if you want to remain competitive and grow as a leader. 

4.) Read, Read, Read 

If you’ve ever heard the saying “Leaders are readers,” then you know that reading is a habit worth building. Read every leadership book you can get your hands on. Not only can reading greatly improve your knowledge about your Wells Fargo Manager position, but it can also be used to improve your interpersonal skills by providing insight into the experiences and viewpoints of others, ultimately making you more valuable to customers, colleagues, and clients.  

Not all the answers for effectively leading a team of Wells Fargo employees will be found through peers or bank training and development. I highly suggest reading these leadership books for additional tips on how to navigate your new role: 

  • Becoming a Resonant Leader by Annie McKee 
  • A Whole New Mind by Daniel Pink 
  • Conative Connection by Kathy Kolbe 
  • Extreme Ownership by Jocko Willink 
  • The Birth Order Book by Dr. Kevin Leman 
  • Primal Leadership by Daniel Goleman 
  • Beyond Reason by Roger Fisher 

5.) Extreme Ownership as a Wells Fargo Manager

Another important habit to build as a Wells Fargo Manager in leadership is extreme ownership. As a leader, you must be ready and willing to take accountability for both yourself and your team, whether the situation is good or bad. Extreme ownership starts with you, not the Wells Fargo employees you’re managing.  

If there is a breakdown in the team or with an individual on the team, look to yourself first. Try to see what you could have done differently. Don’t blame others, dismiss criticism, or deflect responsibility for what went wrong. Rather, take extreme ownership and do all you can to remedy the situation, whether that be clarifying the team’s objectives or providing additional mentoring for specific employees.  

The extreme ownership mentality is contagious; it inspires those around you to step up to the plate and take accountability for themselves. Like leaders creating leaders, extreme ownership will create extreme ownership and your team will be better for it. If you’re interested in learning more about these concepts, read Jocko Willink’s book Extreme Ownership, in which he applies the principles learned on the battlefield in Iraq to everyday business situations.   

6.) Address the 5 Core Concerns 

Every employee, no matter if they work at Wells Fargo or Google, has the same 5 core concerns when it comes to how they want to be communicated with and managed.2 Understanding these concerns, and leading in a way that supports and addresses them, is a great way to build trust and loyalty with your team.  

1.) Appreciation:

This concern is exactly what it sounds like. Every Wells Fargo employee wants to feel appreciated for the hard work they do every day. Beyond that, they want to feel appreciated for who they are as well. Show that you understand your team and truly value them. This can be done through actively listening and expressing interest in both their accomplishments and their concerns.  

2.) Affiliation:

This involves creating and maintaining genuine connections with your team members. They can be structural connections (ties that exist because you both work in the same Wells Fargo group or attend the same church), or personal connections (bonds that form from sharing personal stories or experiences). It’s important to create both kinds of connections in order to show yourself as a true leader. If you are never willing to open yourself up to personal connections with your staff, they will feel underappreciated and see you as less of a leader (see tip #9 for more). 

3.) Autonomy:

Autonomy is very important when leading others. By definition, you will not and should not do every single task as a leader. You should delegate to others and allow them the space to do their work. Micromanaging or unilaterally making decisions without involving the input of your team is a quick way to undermine your own leadership.  

4.) Status:

You can understand this concern with the old saying “Give credit where credit is due”. Recognize the hard work and achievements of those around you. Doing this both helps that person feel valued and appreciated, and it also makes you seem more confident since confident leaders do not shy away from uplifting those around them. 

5.) Role:

Each member of your team should be in a fulfilling role. Ask yourself these three questions about each team member to determine if they are in a fulfilling role3:  

  • Does their role on the team have a clear purpose? A clear purpose provides an overarching framework for each employee’s actions and behavior.  
  • Is this role personally meaningful to this employee? A meaningful role will incorporate an employee’s skills, interests, values and beliefs into the task at hand.  
  • Is their role just a pretense? The core concern that each of us has with a role is not a matter of who you should pretend to be, but rather with the role that defines who you really are. In this life—the life you’re living, not a life you’re pretending to live—you want to have a fulfilling role.  

Learning how to address these concerns will improve your relationship with your team members and help you get the results you want. If you’re interested in learning more about these 5 core concerns, read Roger Fisher and Daniel Shapiro’s book Beyond Reason. They give specific examples of how to apply the 5 core concerns to both your professional and personal life.   

7.) Enroll in the Wells Fargo Diverse Leaders Program 

As a Wells Fargo Manager, you have access to the Wells Fargo Diverse Leaders Program. It is a three-day leadership course designed specifically for team members who identify as Asian & Pacific Islander, Black/African American, Latino, or LGBT.  

This program is a great way to explore how your unique background influences you as a leader, and it’s also a great networking opportunity to build a support system of peers who are also learning to lead. 

8.) Research Other Leadership Training Opportunities 

To learn more about Wells Fargo-specific leadership training opportunities, contact your Chief Learning Officer. Don’t stop there, though. You can research other leadership training opportunities in your local area or even online. LinkedIn, Coursera, and local universities all offer various leadership, management, and business courses. You can also research professional organizations that will give you access to webinars, journals, and conferences to help build your knowledge and your network. These options can be especially helpful if your area doesn’t offer the type of training you’re looking for or if you’ve already exhausted your local resources. 

9.) Share Your Story as a Wells Fargo Manager

Be ready to share a little bit about yourself when talking to your team. Feedback from various professionals across industries indicated the top points they wanted to learn about their new leader were: their knowledge and relevant experience, job expectations, their leadership approach, any anticipated changes, and a small bit about their personal life4 (by the way, sharing your story is a left-brain attribute!). 

Don’t overshare, but do open up a little bit to connect with your team and make them feel important. After all, you don’t share personal information with people you don’t find important or trustworthy. 

10.) Schedule Weekly One-On-One Meetings 

One of the best things you can do to promote leadership, compassion, and empathy in your new role as a Wells Fargo Manager is meetings. Schedule weekly one-on-one meetings with each Wells Fargo employee who reports to you. The meetings can be as short as 5 minutes, but 30 minutes is usually recommended. Make them a priority. In other words, don’t schedule over them or regularly cancel them. This will have the opposite effect and you will lose respect and credibility.    

Use this time as a touchpoint to review items that come up throughout the week, and encourage the person you’re meeting with to do the same. This cut down on time lost throughout the week trying to address things that could be efficiently handled in a prescheduled one-on-one meeting. It also makes your communication more effective. Team members will feel valued because they have a dedicated piece of your time. Communication exchange in this type of setting is more likely to be received in a positive way than if the message was hastily written in an email or said in passing as an afterthought. 

These meetings can also be used as an effective way to handle frustrations that may come up in the course of transitioning to a management role. Maybe a team member is put off by how you spoke to them. Maybe it’s the workload you’ve been placing on them while they are going through a difficult time at home. Encourage your team members to respectfully communicate their thoughts. Both positive and negative should be encouraged. This is so that you both may grow in your respective roles, feeling understood and valued along the way. 

We’re Here to Help 

Transitioning to a Wells Fargo Manager or any management role doesn’t have to be overwhelming or stressful. To learn more about how we can help Wells Fargo Managers make the most of their promotion, schedule an introductory phone call using our online calendar. You can also reach out to us at (704) 276-7325 or

About Todd 

Todd Calamita is the founder and managing principal of Calamita Wealth Management. This is an independent, fee-only wealth management company located in Charlotte, NC. Calamita Wealth serves people locally and across the country, that focuses on providing wealth management solutions to affluent individuals over age 50 and their families. He has more than 20 years of experience in the financial services industry. Todd also is passionate about helping people have a better life. He does this by designing and implementing customized financial plans that bring clarity and confidence.

Todd is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and CERTIFIED DIVORCE FINANCIAL ANALYST® professional. His educational background includes a Bachelor of Business Administration from Ohio University. He also received a Master of Business Administration from the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University. Aside from planning, he authored, Plan Smart: Conquering 10 Common Money Traps, as well as numerous articles on wide-ranging personal finance topics, from taxes to retirement accounts. He featured in a Financial Boot Camp TV series as a volunteer showing people how to make smart decisions with their money. When he’s not working, you can find Todd spending time with his wife, Teresa, and their two sons, Colin and Cameron. He enjoys rock climbing, swimming, and traveling. Todd even has a black belt in Tang Soo Do, a Korean martial art. To learn more about Todd, connect with him on LinkedIn.


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