We all have times in our lives where, instead of letting someone else tell us what to do and then getting on with it, we have to actually step up and lead a team, whether it’s a team building activity for PE, a group project at school or uni, or managing one’s own company/ directing a play/ running a country. For example.
Some of us naturally jump towards taking responsibility for everything and ordering other people about, but for the rest of us… how do we procure a life float for when we fall/ reluctantly jump/ are pushed into the deep end?
I published this post unfinished by accident, can’t work out how to make it a draft again. I’ll do some research and then update.
Develop your communication skills: It’s really important that you can describe exactly what you want, succinctly and clearly- in other words, without the other person staring at you then going ‘Wait… say that all again slowly’. Let your team know that they can come and speak to you if they need to, and don’t be God.
In other words, show up, talk to them and get to know them- if you take an interest in their lives, they’ll respond to you- and the task- in a positive way. And stay relaxed, because stress hampers your communication skills and stops you from tackling the problem. A sense of humour and optimism helps: get them to laugh at their mistakes, and remind them that you’ll (you and them) probably work it out in the end.
For more, this site seems to have a lot:
Don’t do this!!!
Keeping up morale is part of your job as a leader- even when you feel like everything’s going pear-shaped. If you create a calm, positive atmosphere, the others will subconsciously follow by example. Remind everyone that setbacks are normal, and to focus on the end goal- WHICH YOU WILL GET TO IN THE END!!!
To help with your confidence (this is actually proven to work) try Power Poses, as made famous by Amy Cuddy (see below)- any poses that a confident person would adopt, like standing tall with your hands on your hips. Hold each one for a minute or two.
Here’s a link to an awesome article that basically breaks it all down for you!
Fine-tune your delegation skills: Trusting your team to make your beautiful vision a reality is a sign of strength, not weakness. If you take it all on yourself- perhaps because you’re desperate to get it just so- you’ll be spreading yourself too thin, and the quality of work will suffer accordingly.
This is partly where the communication element comes in: get to know what each member of your team enjoys most, which chances are will be the same as what they are best at. Although you’re not killing 2 birds with 1 stone, the bird will definitely be certifiably dead: not only will your team be more likely to do a good job if they’re doing something they like and are good at, but I bet they’ll be pleased that you’ve taken the time to get to know them, and that you trust and believe in them. Also, you’ll have more time to do other leadership-realated things.
Do it right, and you’ve got a win-win situation!
Be committed!: The fact that you went looking for info like this suggests you’ve got some commitment already, but I reckon this is pretty important. In 3 words: lead by example. You can’t expect your team to put lots of hard work in if you’re not doing the same, and you will inspire a great deal of respect and motivation by putting in lots of effort, just like all the others. This includes outside work as well: if you’ve promised to treat everyone to drinks after work, keep that promise. Your resultantly happy team will be more likely to deliver top-quality work.
More coming soon!