Being a leader is a very demanding task, both physically and mentally. You need to be a good business person as well as a great psychologist.
It requires a lot of work and constant focus, but with a good team to support you, it has to be rewarding.
Being an actual member of the team you are in charge of is the key to avoiding social rejection. Unless people can feel you as their equal, they will recognize you as an imposter. The only reason they will ever let you be in charge is the chain of command and the fear of losing their position. That is not a good ground to build your role upon.
Once you are appointed a team-leader position, take time to get to know each individual within the group. Make sure you know what it is they do as well as their track record. Let them have a glimpse at the human side of you. This is why it may be a good idea to start your adventure with a team-building activity.
The ‘Halo’ effect happens when you base your opinion on someone according to their most dominant trade. People you perceive as nice are not necessarily responsible and those who are the most outgoing do not necessarily know what they are doing.
All of your decisions need to be based on hard evidence and not your personal opinion. This is particularly difficult to handle if you are new to the company.
Keeping your staff motivated by fear of being unemployed or reprehended is not a good practice. You want the individuals in your group to identify the company’s goals as their personal goals and thus strive for achieving them. Such workers will not regret having to work hard or staying overtime.
The best condition for creating such a feeling is having a unified team where people can feel comfortable, as well as, creating the sense of appreciation so they know their efforts are recognized and the company is ‘good’ to them. Do not let your team cluster into small groups. Organize team building activities regularly.
Even though people enjoy their individuality, when they find themselves in a group, they tend to conform to its opinions. But where do group’s opinions come from?
Well, the group’s opinion is usually the one of the alpha individual’s. This is the loudest, most charismatic individual of the group. As a leader, you need to make sure that this is you. If you managed to become a true team member as mentioned in the first paragraph, you need to be the most prominent one and the rest of the group will follow you.
You are in a position of power so you can use it to make your staff happy, be responsible and proactive and they will love you for it. Even if they secretly oppose to you at first, they will take it in with a smile and understand why your reasons are right. Set a good example for your workers by staying on top of everything.
Relying on each other, and having less feeling of personal responsibility causes people to invest less effort. Your task is to support their individuality within the team in order to make them more efficient. Make sure that each team member has a part of the job which they are personally responsible for.
In order to help them achieve their maximum, delegate according to people’s abilities and training. Getting people out of their comfort zones could help them strengthen their personality but does not necessarily mean that the results of their work are beneficial for the business.
This is adding to the previous point. While delegating tasks, you can empower people by making them in charge of certain processes. Make sure they know they are in charge of the tasks and not the people. Giving power to individuals can cause them to be abusive and disruptive for the working environment.
This is something you want to avoid as it can cause dissatisfaction within the team. This will lead to more problems for you. Make sure you distribute the power equally and not make certain members feel less important or valuable than others within the team.
As a leader, you have an important role within the company. This also means that you are responsible for everything the team does and everything that goes wrong. There is a lot of pressure inflicted upon you by those above you. You need to know how to deal with your stress and turn it into something positive.
Taking your stress out on your team members is possibly the worst thing you can do. They will end up fearing you and being stressed out themselves. A web design company mentions that in their case this may have worked out fine on one or two occasions but it was devastating in the long run. Having everyone aware of the deadlines and their individual goals proved to be more successful.
If you show that you are keeping track of everyone’s success rate, they will make sure they keep up with others and not fall behind the group. There are those teams that will purposely try to lower your criteria by being equal, but only at, for example, 70% of their true capacity. The way you can prevent this is by setting up targets and offering incentives for those who reach them. People will then try to combine their personal interest with those of the team.
Your goal is to create a team where each team member loves coming to work and leaves with a sense of fulfillment and purpose.