The desire to move into an official leadership position is a noble goal. However, before a person is given a leadership position or title it’s crucial to be prepared for the responsibility. Being prepared to lead beforehand will allow a newly appointed leader to successfully influence those they have been entrusted to lead. If you are striving to have an official leadership position or have recently been given an official leadership role, I highly recommend working through and establishing yourself in these 3 elements.
1. The element of your core values
Leaders (both new and seasoned) must know and be true to the core values they have. The actions and attitudes of a leader stem from the character (inner life) and values of a person, either good or bad. Good character and strong values will allow you to be effective in your new leadership role while bad character and weak values will eventually lead to the loss of the leadership position. Taking time to determine and be grounded on your core values will position you for success in an official leadership role.
2. The element of how you will lead
The first aspect of this element is about finding your leadership style and your personal strengths. Learn about leadership and management practices and techniques, then to adapt the areas that would best fit your personality and would allow you to effectively lead. Before you are a leader you should become a student of leadership and take the time to think about the skills that would best assist you in leading others.
The second aspect of this element is to establish how you will lead. To be founded on the traits and attitudes that would allow you to maximize your influence. A few traits of positive and effective leadership include:
• Serving those around you
• Being a catalyst for change
• Building strong relationships
• Leading by example, showing your people what you expect or want
• Inspiring and encouraging your people
• Casting and living out the organizational vision
• Being patient and humble
These traits would benefit you when you do move into a leadership position. The important thing is to not let your new power or title to cause you to adopt ineffective or negative leadership traits. This is why being founded on how you will lead (through positive traits) before you lead is so crucial.
3. The element of your growth mindset
It’s even more imperative to grow yourself after you are appointed into an official leadership position. I’ve witnessed several people grow and learn only until they were placed into a leadership position or have achieved a level of success. The desire they had to grow was based on the position or success, so once they obtained the goal they stopped growing. The danger of being goal driven and not growth driven is that it can cause a person to become ineffective and incompetent. To move to new levels of influence and productivity, chose to be growth driven.
Questions: Can you add to the list? What other things should a future leader establish before being placed into an official leadership position. If your in an official leadership position, what did you do to prepare for it?