Living in a world of constant change, leaders need to start with the question: "what are we leading people for?"
One answer lies in the need for people to think and behave like leaders themselves. This is seen as critical in today's workplace as we continue to move away from 'doing' work to 'thinking' work.
But, how do we achieve this? How do you make sure that the people following you are being more leader-like?
Here are 8 ways to develop leader-like behaviour, brought to you from the Clarity Team:
- Recognise the leadership potential of people, then give them the time and effort to develop that potential. If time and effort are designed to encourage the development of leadership thinking, it will never be wasted.
- Identify emergent leadership in your team and start nurturing these behaviours. You don’t want people to move on before you've seen them realise their potential.
- Assign projects people can work on that will drive their leadership behaviour, challenge current thinking and develop ideas for future success.
- Develop leadership skills within the current role: No matter what job is being carried out, make room for critical analysis and facilitative thinking. Generate opportunities for people to show leadership abilities now.
- Provide feedback and support. You need to constantly support and encourage leadership behaviour, taking risks and learning from mistakes. The feedback you provide has to encourage people to think like a leader.
- Consider people as an individual. A good leader is always thinking about generating results within the team, so create opportunities for them to lead team projects.
- Model the kind of leadership behaviour you would like people to adopt. By being an example to them, you encourage people to think like a leader and imagine how they can put ideas into operation when they lead their teams in the future.
- Ensure leadership development becomes part of the culture of your team. This shouldn't be just a one-off for one or two people in your team. If you encourage everyone to think like a leader, having aspirations and vision that will take them forward and deciding on the future of the company, you will encourage more people to come forward with a leadership mindset.
By considering people within your team as potential leaders of the future, you will encourage a different mindset. People will cease thinking they're just doing a job, start solving complex problems and create opportunities for the future.
"Great leaders don’t create followers; they create more leaders" - Tom Peters