Bury manager Kevin Blackwell threw down the gauntlet to his improving side after they pulled off a 2-1 victory at Oldham.
The Shakers dominated the first half and deserved their 34th-minute breakthrough when Matt Doherty crossed from the right and Cliff Byrne's defensive header hit Oldham team-mate James Tarkowski before going in for an own goal.
Oldham responded after the break but Robbie Simpson, Jonathan Grounds and Jose Baxter were unable to convert chances. Bury duly doubled their lead in the 86th minutes, Steven Schumacher slamming in a penalty after Tarkowski brought down David Worrall, before Simpson's deflected header set up a grandstand finish.
"Hopefully it's the start of a good run, but I'm not kidding myself about where we are at the moment," said Blackwell. "I've only been at the club for a few weeks and I know we still have a lot of work in front of us.
"When I first came here I made some critical comments about the players, so I'm pleased they are throwing them back at me. We have to make sure we are competitive home and away so that we can keep ourselves ticking over.
"There were times when you could see we haven't been winning a lot of games, but we got the job done. In the first half we were good and sharp and we could have had it wrapped up by half-time."