Being an effective manager is about balancing the short term needs of your workload with a long term vision. When you’re evaluating your employees, don’t solely focus on their current performance in their current role. Instead, be intentional about spotting their potential for a higher level and cultivating it. Turn good employees into great leaders with these five techniques:
1. Teach Them to Navigate Networking
Just because an employee is highly talented in their area of expertise doesn’t necessarily mean they’re ready to be a leader. Leadership is a completely separate skill that requires practice to master. A key aspect of being a leader is the ability to form connections with others, which is an area that individual contributors may need guidance on. Teach these employees how to network – give tips on strong introductions, how to facilitate professional conversation, and how to keep in touch to maintain professional relationships.
2. Offer Opportunities to Gain Experience
Provide a safe space for employees with leadership potential to expand their skills and get out of their comfort zones. Let them lead a meeting, be the main contact on a project, give a presentation, etc. These opportunities allow them to learn and grow, and have experience for their resume so you can justify a promotion.
3. Limit Your Assistance
If you are truly invested in turning your good employees into great leaders, you have to be willing to step back at times and let them falter and find their own way. Assign them tasks that stretch their abilities or require them to do research, and only step in when it’s absolutely essential. It may stress them out at first, but will grow their confidence by the end when they realize they truly have the capability.
4. Encourage Accountability
The difference between contributors and leaders is ownership. Encourage accountability in your employees to develop them into leaders. Work with them to help them set their own goals, rather than being told by you what their goals should be. When they feel personally accountable, they are more likely to be fully engaged to achieve their goals. Plus, it transitions them out of the reactive mindset of an employee to the proactive mindset of a leader.
5. Be Transparent
Your employees may not fulfill their potential for growing into great leaders if they don’t receive detailed feedback on where they need to improve and what strengths they should expand on. Be transparent about what they’ll need to do to get to a position to be an effective leader. Knowledge is power, and that specific feedback will give them the framework to grow.
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Find qualified candidates for your team by working with the RPC Company. Since 2002, RPC has been providing quality candidates to employers in the Dallas, Fort Worth, TX and Springfield, MO areas for their hiring needs, including temporary, temp-to-hire, direct hire, and more. Contact RPC Company to learn more about our employer services.