Being a leader in an organisation is tough. From the outside looking in it can appear to be really easy.
Yet what I noticed that being a leader in an organisation is challenging.
As soon as you deliver, the bar is raised, just like it is in the high jump.
There is a lot of unpredictability especially around how people respond to situations and events.
Equally it can be hugely rewarding when you make that breakthrough or improvement and seem to be making great strides forward.
Over the years I’ve seen good and not so good leaders in action.
So what would be on my list of ideas to make you a more effective leader?
Know what’s expected of you
You might be thinking that this is blindingly obvious.
On the other hand is it?
Working with clients individually and in groups over the years what I noticed is that may lack clarity about what their success or otherwise is judged on.
Without this clarity it is difficult to be focused and make sure you are paying attention to what really matters.
Accept your role has changed
As a leader your job is more about orchestrating and influencing results through others rather than doing a lot of the hands on work.
For people from professional backgrounds like accounting this can be really tough.
Most of the time your success is judged on your ability to do things.
Know your limitations
A conductor of an orchestra doesn’t play all of the instruments.
When you are leading there are going to be things that you do well and things you struggle with.
Be clear about what you do best and as much as you can focus on this.
Invest your time wisely
See your time like money. Something that you invest wisely.
There is never an issue with too little to achieve and too much time.
Hire great people
Ideally people who are better than you.
This might seem odd but having great people on your team will raise the standards of everyone, including you.
Bigger challenges, more responsibility and more pressure coupled with less focus on your personal and professional development is not a great combination.
In many ways it calls for even more focus on your continued growth.
Don’t let your ego be your downfall
It might be a strange thing to say but what I’ve noticed is that personal egos can often get in the way of achieving results.
Being willing to listen, be flexible and adaptable to changing circumstances when working with others can set you apart from a majority of leaders.
In truth there are always going to be things that you can do to be a better leader. In many ways you are always work in progress when it comes to leading.
Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 6,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.