Many young leaders struggle with starting strong. They’re passionate and energized. And they want to make a great impression.
Yet there’s the struggle: How does a young leader start strong and leave the best impression possible?
1. Be Passionate: My first piece of advice would be to have a passion for leadership and what you’re doing. The more passionate you are, the more engaged you’ll be as you lead.
2. Listen to your team: You may be the leader of the team but you’re also fresh to the team. If you’re joining an already established team, listen to those who have been there awhile. They’ll have seen how things are run and what improvements can be made. Take their suggestions to heart.
3. Begin to form relationships: Relationships are the bedrock of true leadership. Mingle with others within your organization and get to know them. Without relationship you’ll have a hard time influencing others.
4. Bring something to the table: You were probably brought onto the team for what you have to offer. Don’t be scared to share your voice. Give your opinions on matters that are brought up. Share your new ideas.
5. Take action: Fear can easily enter in as you begin to lead in a new position. Sometimes this can be immobilizing. Don’t let fear cripple your ability to take action. After you’ve listened to the team, be willing to step up and take action.
6. Ask questions: Great leaders know they don’t have all the answers. When you enter into a new position, be willing to ask questions. Even stupid questions. As you ask others what’s going on, what’s happened, what is created within the organization, etc. you’ll gain valuable insight into the company.
7. Do the difficult jobs: Don’t let your title go to your head. Be on the lookout for the jobs that need to be done but may not be getting the attention they deserve. If you see something that needs to be done, do it.
8. Continue to learn: You’re already asking questions and learning about the business. But don’t let this stop you from continuing your education. Read great books, attend seminars or conferences, and fill your mind.
9. Find great partners: There’s the old saying that “Leadership is lonely”. I say it’s only lonely if you let it become lonely. Find other leaders you can partner with or have lunch with. Discover people with similar passions and help build each other up.
10. Have fun: More than anything, don’t let leadership become a drag. It’s an awesome responsibility that can also be a lot of fun. Bring a sense of excitement to the team.
You’ve been given the basics for starting your leadership journey. Get started today!
Question: What else would you recommend to a young leader who is just starting out? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.