Whatever ethical plane you hold yourself to, when you are responsible for a team of people, it’s important to raise the bar even higher. Your business and its employees are a reflection of yourself, and if you make honest and ethical behavior a key value, your team will follow suit.
Ability to delegate
The art of executing your strategic vision is essential to creating an organized and efficient business, but if you don’t learn to trust your team with that vision, you might never progress to the next stage. It’s important to remember that trusting your team with your objectives is a sign of strength, not weakness. Delegating tasks to the appropriate people is one of the most important skills you can develop as your business grows.
Ability to communicate
Knowing what you want accomplished may seem clear in your head, but if you try to explain it to someone else and are met with a blank expression, you know there is a problem. If this has been your experience, then you may want to focus on honing your communication skills. Being able to clearly and succinctly describe what you want done is extremely important. If you can’t relate your vision to your team, you won’t all be working toward the same goals.
Ability to laugh
If your product launches late, you lose that major client, or your funding dries up, guiding your team through the process without panicking is as challenging as it is important. Morale is linked to productivity, and it’s your job as the team leader to instill positive energy. That’s where your sense of humor will finally pay off. Encourage your team to laugh at the mistakes while learning from them instead of crying and wondering what to do next. If you find the humor in the struggles, your work environment will be happy and healthy.
High degree of confidence
There may be days when the future of your company is in jeopardy and things aren’t going according to plan. This is true with any business, large or small, and the most important thing is not to panic. Part of your job as a leader is to put out fires and maintain the team morale. Keep up your confidence level and assure everyone that setbacks are natural and the important thing is to focus on the larger goal. By staying calm and confident, you will help keep the team feeling the same.
If you expect your team to work hard and produce quality content, you must lead by example. There is no greater motivation than seeing top leadership down in the trenches working alongside everyone else, showing that hard work is being done at every level. By proving your commitment to the brand and your role, you will not only earn the respect of your team, you will also instill that same hard- working energy among your staff.
You want to keep your team motivated toward the continued success of the company and keep energy levels up. Whether that means providing snacks, coffee, career advice, or even getting together after work, remember that everyone on your team is human. Keep the office mood a fine balance between productivity and playfulness. If your team is feeling happy and upbeat, chances are they won’t mind staying that extra hour to finish a project or really leaning in when you need them.
Open creative mind
Some decisions will not always be so clear-cut. You may be forced at times to deviate from your set course and make on-the-fly decisions. This is where your creativity will prove to be vital. It is during these critical situations that your team will look to you for guidance and you may be forced to make a quick decision. As a leader, it’s important to learn how to quickly come up with solutions that will potentially solve the problem.
Guiding your team through the process of day-to-day tasks can be honed to a T. But when something unexpected occurs, or you are thrown into a new scenario, your team will look to you for guidance. Drawing on past experience is a good reflex, as is reaching out to your mentors for support. Eventually, though, the tough decisions will be up to you to decide and you will need to depend on your experience and gut instinct for answers. Learning to trust yourself is as important as your team learning to trust you.
Ability to inspire
Creating a business or launching a new product often involves quite a bit of trust. Especially in the beginning stages, inspiring your team to see the vision of the successes to come is vital. Make your team feel invested in the accomplishments of the company. Acknowledge the work that everyone has done and commend team members on each of their efforts. Praise them in front of company leadership. Give them more responsibilities and encourage them to lead. It is your job to keep spirits up, and that begins with an appreciation for hard work. Celebrate the small successes. The always remind them of the big picture.