Unlocking Leadership Excellence: 9 Gems For Young Leaders

Summary: Discover 9 practical leadership gems shared by a seasoned executive to help young leaders excel in their careers.

We recently conducted a Leadership Development Programme for a large global company. Participants were young leaders in the early stages of their careers.

They were still learning to lead themselves. Now they were being presented with the opportunity to learn how to lead others.

This is a crucial transition. One which presents an exciting opportunity to grow as a leader.

But moving from team member to leader of others can also be difficult.

We invited the Managing Director to share the guiding principles for his career as an international executive.

What follows are the 9 practical gems he offered these young leaders.

Click below to watch the video.

1. People are your most important priority.

The higher up you move the more dependent you become on people around you. People come every day with 4 expectations; To know me, value me, focus me and to grow me.

The more creative you are as a leader in meeting these expectations the more successful those people will become. And their success ultimately dictates and governs yours.

2. Always exceed expectations.

Do this every single day. Make a real effort to find out what is expected of you and how to exceed expectations. If you do this you’ll be noticed and recognised.

3. In the short term careers are not always fair.

There will be setbacks. Welcome these early on while you still have the time to bounce back from them. Learn this early.

A horizontal move is not a backward step. Establish a firm and diverse foundation upon which to build your career. Horizontal steps often offer this opportunity.

4. Be bold with your ambitions.

If you think small and plan small you will win small. Thinking big breaks the status quo and pushes a company into achieving large positive goals.Do not dream incrementally. Leaders need to look into the future and imagine the amazing things the company can become.

Then it’s about resolve and know-how to figure out how to get there.

5. Make clear choices.

Not everything is equally important. There are usually only a few critical decisions that will drive the organisation forward.

Discover what these things are. When everything matters resources are diluted and you become focused on the wrong things. Reduce the noise, narrow the focus and concentrate on only the essential.

6. Work together.

Early on in your career it’s often all about you. This is natural. You are busy establishing yourself. This changes over time. You must know how to work with others to achieve more.

People love to work in silos. It’s safer. But it’s important to stop this. To get people to submerge their egos and to work as a team.

7. Connect and confront.

Seek the balance between the two. Connect First. Establish strong relationships. Then use those relationships to surface the issues and disagreements in a constructive way.

Leaders must make the best decisions for the company, not the individual.

This can be uncomfortable. But if relationships are strong you’ll be able to work through difficult issues and secure the best interests of the organisation.

8. Be brave.

“We love people with courage” I remember him saying. The easiest solution to a problem is often not the correct one. Make the difficult choices. Sometimes you will fail, but if failure isn’t an option, winning isn’t either.

Courage is a muscle you need to build every single day.

9. Love what you do.

No one can fake passion. People will feel it and it will be difficult to inspire others. Be authentic and know your subject. In this way you will be able to inspire others and appeal to their emotions as well.

Do you have a leadership philosophy?

A set of beliefs, values, principles and guiding concepts that articulate your approach to leadership. Is it written down?

Sharing your leadership philosophy, especially with the younger team members in your organisation can help unlock their own leadership excellence and guide them on their leadership journey.

It’s one of your most important responsibilities.

And it’s never too late to start!

We love hearing from you. Comment below or email me at grant@leadershipworks.co.za.

Please also send this post to 1 person who will find it valuable. Thank you!

If you’d like to be in touch please call me on +27 82 894 4288 or mail me on grant@leadershipworks.co.za.

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