Are you interested in people?
Are you ready to serve others? Are you ready to develop someone else into your own position i.e. put yourself out of a job?! Personally I think these are a few of the keys to successful people management and leadership. I am using both terms here since they are often intermixable in many organisations. As I see it the differentiator is that a people manager is responsible for employees within an organisation whereas a leader is someone people follow because they choose to.
This article is really aimed at those people taking on a team leader/ people management position for the first time but is just a relevant if your job title is Vice President or even CEO!
One thing I did not get taught when I had my first team is that everyone needs to find their own style of leadership and this includes trying things out. There is not one hard and fast strategy to success which works with all teams in every situation.
There are a vast array of leaders who do what they do in a number of ways. What is important is to recognise that you are working with people. Each person is unique and will have a different set of values, strengths and motivating factors.
As a manager you should accept this and be curious about working with different types of people.
Over the next ten weeks I will share with you ten key ideas to try out to engage with your team better. You will see that the majority of these keys to successful leadership are focussed around communication and soft skills.
It is a myth that you need to be the best technically or functionally to lead a team. A common mistake in many organisations is to promote people who are technically good at their job; unfortunately this does not automatically mean they will be a good manager.
The key skills to be a good people manager and therefore those which can make you a true leader of people are clear communication, listening, self-learning and finding appropriate ways to motivate your team in a supportive style. If you do these things consistently your team will trust you. There is a lot of research around Emotional Intelligence and those people who hold the most influence and get dedicated followers in general are those who excel in Emotional Intelligence.
The ‘keys’ I am sharing with you are just that; ‘ideas’. They are not a checklist for a robot to take and implement.
Try taking a couple of the ideas which resonate best with you and your style and try them out, find your own way to do it. Only by creating your own way and implementing incremental positive changes will you make a positive impact on your team. It is about you finding a way to be authentic in your role and consistent in your approach to your team in your own unique way.