Leadership Calls: Are You Truly Ready? #peopleskills
by Kate Nasser | 11 Comments »
Leadership Calls: Are You Ready to Answer?
Leadership calls. Are you ready to lead others? Do you have the people skills to handle the tough moments?
Do you have the emotional intelligence to spot difficulties early on? Do you have the initiative and courage to step up in order to prevent difficulties from becoming major trouble?
Leadership Calls: How Will You Answer?
In the 25 years I’ve been consulting to mid-level leaders, I’ve seen an unfortunate trend. They are managing functions not leading people. Leadership calls, they get promoted, and then feel stumped on how to lead others.
The good news is, you can develop your leadership people skills. Whether new to leadership or not, when leadership calls you can be ready.
Prepare your people skills for these tough situations …
- Someone comes to you and says a co-worker is bullying or harassing them. What would you do? There is much evidence to show many leaders minimize the person’s claim, blame the victim, or tell the victim to work it out with the co-worker. BIG mistake. Your response comes across to the victim as abandonment and mistrust. Co-worker bullying thrives on leaders who live in denial. Leadership calls and the leaders don’t lead. They deny and blame.
Leadership people skills approach: Don’t abandon your employees. Get closer. Talk to them. Ask non-judgmental questions! Explore and listen. In this way, you communicate that you care. You also learn important information and understand the issue. You can then decide on appropriate next steps.
- One employee is slacking off. No one is formally complaining to you but they complain to each other. What would you do? If you are thinking, “how would I know if an employee is slacking off,” you are not leading. Leading is pro-active emotional intelligence in action. It senses and sees what’s going on before the virus spreads.
Leadership people skills approach: Stay connected to the pulse of the workplace. With the teams’ input, set the bar high and then call everyone to reach it with skills, attitude, and great teamwork. If some are slacking off, speak with them. Find out if it’s a skills issue or an attitude issue. If it’s a skills issue, address development or reassignment. If it’s an attitude issue, be clear and frank. Leadership calls and you must call everyone to high levels of performance. If you hide your head on this one, the quicksand will pull you all under.
- There’s an organizational change announced and you must lead your teams through it. Upper leadership has announced it. You and your teams aren’t thrilled about it. How do you act? If you commiserate with your teams, you enable their resistance.
Leadership people skills approach: Embrace the change and lead them to do the same. Empathize and acknowledge their feelings but don’t commiserate and encourage mutiny. Deepen your commitment to the change and get closer to your teams to buoy them. If you don’t believe in the change, why should they?
To get closer and deeper when leadership calls, remember …
- Being objective and fair doesn’t mean being neutral. Lead them. Don’t abandon them.
- Leadership requires performance of your duties. Hiding and denying are a form of malpractice. Overlooking symptoms, avoiding necessary conversations, blaming instead of resolving are leadership negligence. Leadership calls. Lead with your eyes wide open.
- Bonds are not the same thing as bondage. Bonds don’t handcuff and block success. Closer and deeper bonds build trust — the pathway to success. Leadership calls. Be more connected to your people not just the results.
From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™
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Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.
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I LOVED this part so much “Stay connected to the pulse of the workplace.”
Indeed, leaders are the heart of the team. They either make or break team progress.
Your eyes captured the most important message in this post! Staying connected to the pulse changes everything — employee morale, performance, innovation, and problem prevention.
Thank you so much for your interest, time, and comment.
I love the pulse line too….whenever anyone is in hospital we always ask if the vital signs are good. the vital signs in a company revolve around the finger on the pulse. Is it slowing down or could it be…the Quickening!
Thats the thing about great #peopleskills….when anything is going wrong, when people slacken off…you know it, because you are aware of more than people who do not have peopleskills….
Its all about Keeping in touch, staying visible, remaining connected…great post Kate
Thank you Dave. You are so right about people skills being the mechanism that always takes the pulse. People skills build bonds and from their the pulse always comes beating right at you!
Many thanks for your comment here.
In addition to whether the individual believes they possess the right balance of skills, the organisation itself has a responsibility to ensure that a leader progressing through the ranks has the ability and the capability to perform a particular role. Effective onboarding, of both internally recruited and externally recruited leaders, has proven a wise insurance policy engaged to follow up any investment in that person (recruitment costs or development costs). Getting leaders started well in a new role/organisation pays dividends in terms of their long-term tenure and performance.
So very true. And I read you latest post. Love the point you make about top notch talent not seeking a job where they just maintain the status quo!
Many thanks for your comment here,
Kate, great article, points, and take aways to think about! It’s why we named our company “Leadership Call”…. At Leadership Call, we believe understanding and managing our emotions is the critical skill in all successful people…it is
“The Point of Leadership” ™
All the best,
Self-awareness, self-esteem, and self management! On target Ed.