As a leader, you know that developing leadership skills was an integral part of your career advancement strategy. But many people just starting on their career journeys have not yet taken the initiative to develop these skills. Helping others advance up the career ladder might seem like a lot to take on in addition to your already demanding job, but the hard work does pay off. Successful leaders know how to develop and nurture talent, strengthening their teams along the way.
There are many ways to help those around you develop the leadership skills they need to succeed. With a few simple rules, you too can cultivate leadership talent.
Trust Your Team
To become leaders, team members will first need to feel confident about their work. If they have been in their role for a while, chances are they are quite confident at how well they can perform. Yet, they may not take initiative to perform tasks slightly outside their role’s scope. Giving a team member the ability to try something new shows that you trust their performance. The simple act of giving a team member more responsibility can help to give them the confidence they need to pursue greater leadership roles within the team.
Give Credit Where It Is Due
Professionals early in their careers need recognition and feedback in order to know they are on the right track. A positive remark or regularly scheduled recognition of a job well done can lead team members to aspire to something greater. Just as leaders seek crucial feedback from their teams to improve metrics and performance, team members want to know their instincts are aligned with the company’s goals. Once they do, they may be ready to pursue a greater leadership role within their current team or department.
When you were becoming the leader you are today, you undoubtedly faced pitfalls and challenges. It can take years of hard work for a promising upstart to become a successful and confident leader. Trying not to rush the process when you have already been through it yourself can be difficult. It is essential, though, to be patient with team members as they grapple with some of the same issues current leadership dealt with at the beginning of their careers. Even if you have a team member in mind for future leadership opportunities, remember that they have to learn for themselves what leadership truly means.
Those in leadership positions would do well to help team members develop their own leadership skills. Coaching newcomers by building confidence and recognizing talent is beneficial to the organization as a whole.