Supporters find it just as difficult and in some quarters expectation ran rampant when Hughes, whose own playing career took him to two of the 'big four' he is now trying to gatecrash, realises the process takes time.
"However well prepared you are, however well organised you are, or how much thought goes into a plan to bring success to a club, sport is a difficult business. It is fluid," he said.
"Ideally we can get to March and April and be in the mix for competitions. If we are, then we will have a good run at them.
"But it is an education for everyone to see the scrutiny that comes with being a big club. Everything is changing about the perception of Manchester City.
"That is a learning process for everybody and is something that will never be the same again."