When you were younger, the first teachers that you had were your parents and other family members. You were learning so many new things that became ingrained in you without you even realizing it. In a lot of those situations you learned by observing your family, friends and people at school. They were the examples that taught you the early lessons in your life. Now that you are leading others, this has shifted a bit. You are now the one that others are observing. They are watching your example and learning from you. Being consistent and displaying the leadership example is what people will be looking for you to do every day. This shouldn’t be work for you, it should just be you as your authentic self. So what do you need to keep in mind to do this successfully?
Whether you are a new leader or an experienced one, the best thing you can do is to continue to develop yourself. The things that you learn are lessons that you will be able to share with your team. They will see that you value self-development and they will follow your lead. Setting up an environment to ensure this happens is foundational to ensuring your team’s success. This is the concept of “Servant Leadership.” In this article called: Servant Leadership: Who Is Ultimately Responsible for Your People’s Success? by Ronald M Allen, he shares the characteristics of being a servant leader. The premise of the article is that “Being capable of self-development that feeds the needs for the personal growth of a team is unique in today’s workplace of highly individual efforts. At the division and director level, exhibiting the behavior of the servant leader sends a clear message to all employees that this is a nurturing environment: one that upholds the value of its employees and, moreover, respects its employees as people.”
According to the author, “When a leader executes accordingly, this show of confidence in one’s fellow employees speaks to the security of the leader and the trust they show in their employees.” Demonstrating this type of leadership may not be something that is a part of your company’s culture today, but you can start implementing it in your own team. Showing how this is successful for your team, will spark questions from others about what you are doing. This is what makes a leader stand out from the crowd. This is the leader that people want to work for and respect. Now you are not only setting the example for your team, but also for your organization.
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