New Leaders: what's the biggest change in behaviour you'd recommend?

Originally posted on LinkedIn on January 10, 2018.

We've all heard scary stories about staff who have been promoted to leadership roles, without any of the tools or training they need to succeed. It's one thing to be a team member as a subject matter expert or a functional superstar; it's quite another thing to lead a team of experts and superstars.

Leaders need to be generalists: their staff need to be whiz-bang in each of their specialties, while a leader needs to know enough about all the specialties to connect the dots at a higher level. Good leaders empower and remove roadblocks, but don't need to be experts in every function for which they are ultimately responsible.

But what about a new leader, who used to be that functional expert, but has now been thrust into a generalist role? What tools does that new leader need in his or her tool chest in order to begin to thrive in the leadership position?

If you were to mentor new leaders, what advice would you give? What behaviours should they adopt, to be truly successful in leading their teams? My big one is trust: if new leaders can learn to trust their new teams, they can empower team members to take on new levels of responsibility.

What do you think? 

If you were to mentor new leaders, what advice would you have for them? What new behaviours should they adopt, in order to be successful in leadership roles?


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