How To Be A Successful Team Leader – You’ve Got This
It is not an easy process to move from one of the team to leading a team – there are many difficult challenges and hurdles to get over, often at the same time and often carrying the potential to make big mistakes.
A tricky situation!
To plan your progress into this very important career opportunity, follow the pointers below to move forward with confidence:
- Put your Team first: your number one priority here is to put your Team first: get to know them, what they love most about their job and what they would like to change if they could. Ask them how you can best support and help them. Doing this regularly will give you clear information about how they and the Team is developing and what the stresses and strains are that they are feeling, something they may hide from you. The most important thing here is that they trust you as their leader.
- Lead by example: your staff will copy what you do and there is no way of escaping this. You need to set an example and your behaviours will be something they will look out for. If you get stressed and angry when things do not go as planed this will then be mirrored in how they behave. If you cut corners ad ignore organisational policies and procedures they will act in the same way, investing in your own personal development will allow them to do the same and if you deliver on your promises, the \team will also follow this lead. It is very important therefore to identify and be clear on the behaviours you expect from them, making sure that you also follow them!
- Communicate effectively: never assume that you and the Team are on the same page unless you are in constant conversation with them. Is what you want to achieve clear and do they want to follow what you need them to do? Are you getting your point across? If you cannot inspire them you are not doing your job! You need to focus on the following:
- Clarity: set specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely (SMART) goals so that there is no confusion and the message is crystal clear.
- Transparency: make sure the Team know what is going on and that you update them on issues and initiatives that are taking place. Big picture projects are just as good as small pieces of work but if there is something that you cannot say, be transparent about this also.
- Consistency: be predictable and never leave your Team guessing about what is going on ad why. This only leads to frustration and a lack of trust which, once started, is very hard to recover from.
- Be clear on what is important and delegate the rest: you cannot, and should not, do it all. Your time needs to be spent on strategic planning for your area of responsibility, performance evaluation, coaching, removing obstacles getting in the way of the Team and motivating your staff. Everything else needs to be delegated. Your delegation will allow your individual members of staff to develop their skills and to demonstrate their worth, essential for job satisfaction and high performance. Stretch assignments or projects will help build confidence, broaden horizons and give staff the opportunity to see what career progression might look and feel like.
- Celebrate success: your success is their success, just as their success is your success. Same goes for failure too! Make the Team feel appreciated, valued and respected.
Make sure that you work on all the above areas, consistently and with commitment.
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