At one time or another we’ve all been new at something. Whether it was sports, music, or even academia we’ve all broached and continue to broach new adventures everyday. Like all trivial or uncertain parts of our life, how do we endure? We have coaches, mentors, and leaders to help us. Yet, what about the workplace? Traditionally in the workplace we’ll have managers, supervisors, or even the CEO directly looking over us. What I’ve found in my working experience is that many people in a managerial position have no idea how to manage people. Additionally most managers don’t understand that people don’t want to be managed; we want to be led. Having a manger breathing down your neck for a deadline is much different than one that will give you all the resources necessary for you to meet that deadline. However, there is really good news. At any time you can be the leader you always wish you had and be a leader in your workplace no matter what your experience level is, or how long you’ve been working there. Here are my three ways you can become a leader in your workplace today:
Listen – Seems easy enough right? Just kind of open your ears and things will kinda sink in. Well not so much. If you want to be a leader in the workplace you need to really listen. Why? Because most people are afraid to tell you what they’re really thinking. Why are they afraid? Because they don’t want to be fired or thought less of if they need additional help. I certainly can’t speak for all work environments, but from my experience most businesses are so focused on the bottom line, they forget the people who serve on the front line and make everything possible. To step up and become a leader in whatever position you are in or aspire to be in, it’s so important to listen actively. Don’t just listen to the words your co-workers or associates are saying, pay attention to their body language. Do they need help? What do they need for their day to go a little smoother? Do they just need to vent? Be that rock for them.
Analyze – No matter what job I’ve had and will have throughout my career, I love to know the process of business. What does that mean? I’m obsessed with knowing what every department does and how the puzzle fits together. Again I can’t speak for all businesses but I will say most businesses do not offer any kind of cross training for you to see how the puzzle fits together. What does that mean? It means going out of your way to ask questions and learn. Ask someone in another department what they do and how it fits into the big picture. Once you understand the flow of the organization you work for, providing assistance to every department can become much easier, as you’ll understand and grasp the needs of those around you.
Conclusion – Literally anyone can be a leader in the workplace. Whether you have 5 days or 5 years experience, leadership is so much of what you do for others than necessarily a knowledge of subject matter. Make the people who you work with feel supported and a funny thing happens; You become supported. You define yourself as an asset to your workplace and that is how promotions and growth happens. When you are in the managerial role you will have the option to manage or lead. Take the steps, do the work, be a leader. What are some ways that you step up at work? Are there certain things you do to leverage up the people around you? Let us know in the comments below!