Career development specialist and author of “Next Move, Best Move” Kimberly B. Cummings calls leadership an “art form”. Tips to become a great leader.
Employees & Managers Can Become Great Leaders
Leaders often make the difference between people doing great jobs or terrible jobs.
Here are five tips to help anyone (doesn’t matter whether “anyone” is an employee, contract worker, consultant, manager) who wants to help create more motivation and increased productivity at work. Practice these tips and you’ll help lead the way for you and your colleagues towards doing “great jobs.”
Practice “Radical Transparency”
Help break the cycle of secrecy too often present at work by including your colleagues in on decisions that affect them, by asking for feedback and by sharing important information/news before that information becomes public.
Your colleagues will feel more included, more trusted and more trusting of the people with whom they work and with you.
Study How Your Colleagues/Team Members Work
Leaders make it their business to understand how their colleagues and team members work as a whole. Understand people as individuals. Understand how everyone treats each other and how they are treated.
Remember that we are interconnected regardless of our specific roles/functions and that the success of one person helps drive the success of others.
Most employees and managers are not trained to become leaders. And some employees and managers don’t even want to be leaders.
However, the reality is that everyone, even the most solitary of us, winds up working with others in some fashion and for some period of time.
Reach out to a former colleague or boss you liked/respected and ask them for advice to help you develop insights and skills that will guide you through the process of working with others.
Regardless of your position/role/function at work, put yourself in a position to do the kind of work and the style of work that tap into your motivation, strengths and skills. Talk with your colleagues/supervisors/mentors about how you perform and the goals you’d like to achieve.
“Manage up” to help create proactive, not reactive, working realities.
Give Your Colleagues/Supervisors/Mentors a Preview of Your Potential
If you’d like to develop your leadership skills and opportunities, Cummings suggests that you ask yourself…
- How are you innovating your current role/function?
- Are you adding value to your specific role/function and to your work environment as a whole?
- How does your work impact your colleagues/clients and how can your work become more impactful?
If you can answer one or more of these above questions with evidence-based answers, it’s likely you are positioning yourself for your next and/or more expansive role.
Thanks to National Public Radio.