If you have just been thrust into a new leadership role, chances are you may be feeling a bit overwhelmed regarding your new responsibility. First of all, congratulations on your new position! Chances are you have worked hard to reach this professional goal and now all of your hard work is finally paying off. However, you still have plenty more work ahead of you. When you are in a new leadership role, it can seem like a burden from time to time, but this is truly one of the biggest compliments your employer can give you. Your new leadership role is a big responsibility, so here are some tips on how to dive in head first and make the most of your new role.
Remember: You Are a Leader, Not Just a Manager
The first thing to remember is that leaders and managers are not the same thing. As a leader you are responsible for showing others the best way to act. Leadership is about more than taking on additional responsibilities, it means always being the one to lead the group and even take the blame when things do not go well. You need to form a sense of trust between yourself and your staff members, which means getting to know them on a personal and professional level so you can determine the best way to motivate them to reach their goals.
Find a Mentor and a Mentee
When you begin your new leadership position, you need to find both a mentor for yourself and someone for you to mentor. Having your own mentor is important as you can learn from their mistakes and get valuable feedback regarding the best approaches to being a leader. They have probably made plenty of mistakes, just as you will, but with a mentor helping you along the way, you can avoid having history repeat itself.
You also need to find a mentee — someone you can mentor yourself. This will help put you in the right teacher mindset that can help you hone your leadership skills and learn how to motivate others. Being a mentor also helps you be accountable for the things that you are (and are not) doing in your new role.
Perfect Your Time Management Skills
You are in a new position as a leader, which means you are about to have a lot more responsibility thrust on your plate. As a leader, you need to have the time to not only complete your own tasks but to have the time to mentor and help others as well. This means you need to start working on your time management skills. It can be hard to fit it all in at first, but over time you will learn what it takes to balance it all. Remember, while it can seem difficult to get it all done in the beginning, many times individuals in new positions allow themselves to get overwhelmed by the little things that ultimately don’t matter. Make sure you prioritize and focus on tasks that will help your team. Also, keep in mind that as a new leader you also have the power to delegate responsibilities as well. You may be the leader, but it doesn’t mean that you have to do it all.
Keep these tips in mind as you try to navigate the waters of your new leadership position. It can seem tricky from time to time, but remember that your boss put you in this position because they knew you could handle it. While there may be speed bumps along the way as you get started, if you keep these tips in mind in your new leadership position, you are sure to handle the challenge like a pro.