You see what usually happens is this:
- Very competent young manager proves themselves in a very demanding role
- Naturally they want to progress.
- An employer sees evidence they are competent and wants to reward their quality
- Young manager is promoted into a leadership role
- Left to get on with it
- Young manager sinks, swims or struggles. Usually the first or third.
- Management wonders what’s happened to the Young Manager.
- No leadership training offered
- The phrase “promoted to the level of incompetency is bandied around.”
- Young manager moves on or sorts out what is required
- Bad stuff happens everywhere.
You get the drift, you may have been through a similar process yourself.
So I’ve put these tips together based on hard-won experience on how you can manage the transition from Manager to Leader.
1. Recognise the difference
Management is different to Leadership. The first step is the hardest, you must recognise there is a difference. What worked before may no longer work so be ready to adjust.
2. Move into leadership before you’re ready
Don't hang around until you think you're ready, make the move now! Leadership is never perfect so it’s never too early to start
3. Focus on capabilities NOT skills
Think about the soft skills you need for leadership.
4. Act like a Leader NOW!!
Don't procrastinate! Become the leader you want to be by behaving that way NOW!
5. Take on a Project which demonstrates leadership
Find something practical to do right now. Learn from the experience and prove to others your leadership skills. Build your portfolio. Great for your CV.
6. Find a coach AND a Mentor
You need help! A Coach will help move you forward but find a mentor who is a leader in your field. Let them help you grow and develop.
7. Clarify your Purpose and Mission
Unless you know what you are on this earth for, your leadership will not be authentic.
8. Be clear about the Change you want to make
Leadership is about creating change, so be clear what the change is you want to create and that it aligns with your purpose and mission
9. Read plenty of books!
Never stop learning! Put time aside each day for reading. All the knowledge you need is out there, follow your nose.
10. Get comfortable with taking risks
Understand risk and how to manage it but you cannot escape it!
Hope you find this helpful. Let me know if you do.