Let’s be clear up front. Moving from Management to Leadership is not about doing more, it’s about doing differently.
It’s less about the what and more about the how. And once you grasp this (and you will – really quickly) the transformational shift from management to leadership is yours.
Now, this doesn’t mean that all you ever do in your role is lead. After all, no matter what your place in an organisation, there is always the day job. But as you start to scale the dizzy heights of your career, always reflect on how much time you are spending leading? And, therefore how much time are you spending on the doing and managing?
If you had a pie chart representing doing, managing, leading what would it look like?
You don’t make the pie bigger! This the biggest mistake I see every day because a bigger pie assumes you need more time and that’s one thing you don’t have!
Instead, we change the size of the portions so that the doing and managing slices shrink and the leadership slice expands!
However, before we get to the shifts, let’s quickly establish the difference between doing, managing and leading, so we know what each slice means.
- Doing – the day-to-day tasks that need to be worked through to completion.
- Managing – when you’re keeping an eye on things, checking in with others on progress, setting boundaries and accountabilities. This is making sure others are getting the doing done!
- Leading – leadership is when you are out ahead of the game, looking to the future, setting the course, being clear on the “why” of the direction chosen. You’re inspiring others, coaching and motivating them to join in, to be part of something bigger. Exciting isn’t it?
So, what will help you move into that leadership space? What are the three transformational shifts you can take that will enable you to be the leader you want to be?
In a nutshell, Leadership is about optimism, perspective and a good dose of tenacity!
Let’s take a look at what that means for you.
- Optimism – an optimistic leader is a successful leader. You in a good place has a huge positive impact on your team. No-one wants to be around a pessimist. The future needs to be, at best, full of opportunity. At worst, have a clear and bright silver lining to keep everyone in the team motivated.
- Perspective – a key leadership skill for you to develop is to be able to look at what is going on from different perspectives – and help others to do the same. This is when being a leader as coach is essential. When a team member is stuck, help them shift their thinking to re-energise and re-engage them.
- Tenacity – “the quality of not giving up easily” (thanks Oxford Dictionary). A perfect, simple description of tenacity. In all the work I’ve done over the years with leaders, tenacity is often the divider between the good and the great. When others are giving up, (or secretly hoping if it gets too difficult everyone else will!) you will be the one holding the course for the team. You’ll be pushing for completion and conclusion and able to celebrate a job well done.
Now that you are armed with the knowledge of these simple, transformational shifts of optimism, perspective and tenacity your journey from management to leadership will be easier, smoother and more enjoyable for both you and your team.
So how do you make these real for you?
The task I’m setting this week is that you to look at your diary for the next five days and seek out opportunities where you can make that shift from management to leadership. Display optimism, perspective or tenacity – or maybe even all three! And if it’s a weekend coming up, try it out on friends and family!
Notice how it makes you feel to be in that place of leadership; notice what difference it makes to your team. And if you’d like to share your success, PLEASE come back and do so and inspire others to try this out for themselves.