This is the third of Three Leadership Skills:
3. Cultivating Future Leaders
In the earlier posts on Three Leadership Skills, we looked at Inspiring a Vision and then to Foster Collaboration, now we will look at finding and cultivating leaders. So let’s see how you find them. First you want to target who your new leaders are going to be. The question becomes how do you do this? My top three areas I look at are as follows:
- How good are they in their current position?
- Do others look up to them for advice and mentoring?
- Are they willing to go above and beyond the call of duty to ensure success not only in their job but also for the company as a whole?
1. How good are they in their current position? This is one of the key areas a manager will typically notice first. They may be extremely successful in their current job and immediately our antennas go up because we think we have found a leader. This may not be the case. They might be very good at what they are doing, but they have no intention of being a leader. Or they wish to be a leader, but they really don’t have what it takes to be a leader and no matter how hard you try to help them to become a leader, they just can’t get there.
2. Do others look to them for advice and mentoring? This is extremely important. It is very hard to be a new manager without having the respect of your team. If your team does not look to you as an expert or they feel you will not be able to coach them to the next level in their position, then your new manager’s success will be limited. I have seen many a team take down a new manager. The title does not give you respect or authority; only your actions do this. So you as the Manager must make sure your new potential leader is set up properly for success prior to even mentioning a leadership opportunity to them.
3. Are they willing to go above and beyond to ensure not only success for them, but also for the company? When you see this type of mentality, then you know you have a leader. It does not necessarily mean they are working longer hours, this sometimes means they are not managing their time well and they are trying to mask their inability by working longer hours. Instead you are looking for leaders who always build the companies vision, mission and values into what they do. Help them to build goals that show this on a regular basis – Begin early in establishing these strategically into their every day lives. This will strengthen your team now and in the future.