I was recently asked, “What would you give as advice for new leaders?” To answer this question, I think you have to go back in time to when you were a new leader. As a new leader there are many things that go through your head. You may feel excited, overwhelmed, nervous, and/or a wide range of other emotions. These feelings are normal and expected.
As a new leader, you are in a position where you have a lot of control over things that you didn’t have control over in the past. Once you get over the initial range of emotions, it is time to get to work. So what is my advice for new leaders?
Three Pieces Of Advice For New Leaders
Change slowly at first
As a new leader, it is easy to get change fever. You will want to change the whole world by making sweeping changes ranging from how things are run to what people do. My advice for new leaders is that it is okay to make changes, but you need to do it slowly at first. Before you make sweeping changes, try to understand the existing processes.
What roles do people have? Who is responsible for what? Which processes are effective and which ones have been problems for years that people were too afraid to bring up? Once you understand how things are currently run, you will be able to identify how to best change things going forward. You can make changes that help the processes to move more smoothly. If you make sweeping changes without understanding the background and reasoning behind the existing processes, you may find yourself changing something that doesn’t need to be changed.
Additional advice for new leaders would be to gain the trust of those you work with and over. When you start in a new position, people automatically have questions about you and the kind of leader you will be. They want to know why you got the position and not them or their friend that was going for it.
As they question you, it is important to gain their trust. Show them you care about them and their success. Be sincerely interested in each member of your team. Get to know them. Find out why they do what they do with sincere interest. Be quick to listen and slow to tell people what to do. Also, get their opinions on how things could be run better. They have valuable insight on what does and doesn’t work because they have been there longer than you.
My final piece of advice for new leaders would be to work hard. There is no substitute for hard work. Get to work right away to gain the respect of your employees and coworkers. The harder you work the greater impression you will make. As you work hard, those you lead will see that you care about what you do. This will also be beneficial to you because it will help you gain a better understanding of your responsibilities in your new role. Hard work will also help you to gain the trust of those you lead.
As a new leader it can be very easy to get overwhelmed because you want to change the world and make your mark. You have a lot on your plate. If you work hard, gain trust, and make change slowly at first you will have much more success. You will be able to connect with your followers and gain valuable experience and insight
What is Your Advice For New Leaders?
What else would you give as advice for new leaders? What do you wish you new as a new leader that it took you a long time to learn? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below.