10 Things Every New Leader Should Do

When you are a leader, people will be watching your every moves like a hawk.

So, there are a couple of things to do and not to do in order to be unimpeachable and to represent your true self well.

Sometimes, the novelty of the job, the number of people you meet, the quantity of information transiting in your direction, the new type of pressure tend to make you forget your role as a leader.

The truth is that you do during your first few days as a leader will mark memories in the long run.

10 Things Every New Leader Should Do

10 Things Every New Leader Should Do

#1. Create work-life balance

Congratulations on your new position!

  1. Take a moment to drain it all in and celebrate success. When you access a new position, you are either frightened or excited.
  2. Take some time to assess your new role and the advancement in your career, on your success.
  3. Get your personal life together. Have hobbies and a strong support system in place.
  4. Prepare your transition to your new position.

#2. Mind your character

When you meet someone for the first time, they will have a tendency to test you, your principles, character, core values and boundaries.

For example, from your boss to the cleaning lady, they will all check if you get angry easily or his much patience you have.

It is important to always be developing yourself as a leader.

#3. Check your attitude

A positive attitude is everything and will determine your heights to success. During the first few months, it is detrimental to:

  1. Stay visible.
  2. Adopt a winning strategy.
  3. Be aware of your actions. You are now a role model.
  4. Keep a positive attitude and body language, even when you don’t feel like it.

#4. Be approachable

Sometimes, it’s important to seem approachable:

  1. Introduce yourself to people even if you don’t know them or are not introduced. Don’t wait too long before introducing yourself or else it will quickly get awkward.
  2. Remember names when you are being introduced.
  3. Try to get along with people for the first few days.
  4. Help others find their motivation.

#5. Groom yourself and dress like a leader

No matter what people say, first impressions matter unfortunately. Dressing like a leader will help you feel confident and will in consequence increase your ability to lead.

Even though you know that clothes don’t define your character, most people make snap judgments.

Also, observe the company’s dress code and dress accordingly.

#6. Keep learning

Learning is a humbling process. Even though new leaders think that they can handle their position with their old skills and their old knowledge, most of them don’t have the necessary skills to be a leader.

  1. Make sure that you study and learn the corporate culture.
  2. Evaluate what you have learned from your previous jobs and from the previous one in your position.
  3. Ask questions even if they make you look or feel incompetent.
  4. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to perform.
  5. Don’t stop learning. Not because you have reached a leadership position that you have to stop learning and stop asking questions.

#7. Build relationships

Building the right relationships is a cultural key to success.

To quickly build relationships and to grow your network, put your interpersonal skills to the test and make a positive first impression.

#8. Watch out for office politics

Office politics in the first few days is risky.

  1. Be mindful of office politics and the cliques that already exist.
  2. Choose your clicks wisely you want to belong to. Do not try to belong to a group in particular or try to be friends with their former colleagues.
  3. Keep your opinion about your colleagues and your work to yourself. There is nothing more disgraceful than a gossiping leader that nobody can trust.
  4. Find out how your new team operated in the past.

#9. Assess your strengths and weaknesses 

You do not want to reach these heights and find out that the positions is not made for you, that you are not capable of achieving success, job fulfillment, job satisfaction.

  1. Understand that different skills will be demanded in your new role. What got you here won’t get you there.
  2. Make sure that you really want this position and that it’s right for you.
  3. Get a hold on your purpose. You will know if you are walking in your purpose by the amount of joy you experience while executing your purpose.

#10. Earn your respect

In your first few months:

  1. Do not try to be liked but to be respected. This is an advice for mostly women who have to annoyingly smile and forcefully be polite.
  2. Don’t be too quick to use your new authority or power.
  3. Start taking responsibility for your actions.
  4. Share your core values and set high expectations for performance, results, conduct, alignment and engagement.
  5. Give respect. Find out where your role starts and ends. There is no need to step on anybody’s toes.

Last Words Of Advice!

The first months are the right time to set right habits.

  1. Don’t stop growing and expect discomfort.
  2. Remember that you are the one who makes the decision.

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

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15 Edifying Experiences That Help Leaders Learn To Lead

The best leaders develop their skills on the field and learn from their experience.

They acknowledge that they do not know everything, that their learning process is singular but they are curious and are open to learn.

It is common knowledge that experience is the best teacher. Your experiences will help you develop a leadership style, a communication style, core values, purpose, character and emotional discipline.

Wondering how and which experiences can teach you how to lead?

15 Edifying Experiences That Help Leaders Learn To Lead

25 Edifying Experiences That Help Leaders Learn To Lead

Through your experiences, if you take time out to extract the lessons from your experiences, you will become a wiser and successful leader.

#1. When You Fail

At some point in your career, you will fail as a leader or as a person. You will fail to meet deadlines, to perform or to succeed.

However, every leader knows that you cannot let failure define you and that you must go on.

Indeed, failure is most often seen in a negative light but shows you what you are really made of.

Failure are inevitable, are a factor for change, redirects your career, helps you change procedures and your character.

Experiencing failure teaches you to:

  • Be more self-aware.
  • Identify the cues of failure.
  • Don’t punish yourself for failures and forgive yourself.
  • Measure the consequences of the mistakes and take responsibility for the failure.
  • Encourage constructive criticism as much as feedback is given.
  • Make immediate analysis and changes to fix the mistakes.
  • Be smart and learn from the mistakes made.
  • Be wise and learn from the mistakes of others.
  • Create an environment that is safe to make mistakes and to recover from them.
Fail early, fail often, but always fail forward. - John C. Maxwell Click To Tweet

#2. When You Get Familiar With Positivity & Success

Positive experiences are highly memorable and can change your life forever.

Positive attitudes can become difficult to maintain in challenging situations in the workplace. But once acquired, it is a habit that can help you overcome bad situations.

Indeed, positivity ensures progress, diffuses situations, alleviates stress, reduces fear, increases endurance, increase self-esteem, attracts positive results and better opportunities.

There are many ways to bring positivity into the workplace and into your mind. When you get familiar with positivity and success, you learn to:

#3. When You Promote Forgiveness

Forgiveness is often seen as weakness in the workplace. However, it is an efficient tool to avoid toxic conflicts, boost productivity, motivation and well-being.

Truthfully, in the workplace, people are sensitive about their work, feelings get hurt easily and emotions get high. It becomes essential to:

  • Forgive yourself when you have wronged someone or yourself.
  • Forgive others for their wrongdoings as well.

Becoming a forgiving person will teach you to:

  • Be compassionate and to let things go.
  • Not define yourself by your mistakes.
  • Not focus on the past and to be present.
  • Do your best next time.

#4. When You Find A Role Model

A role model can be a family member, a friend, a coworker, or another leader.

Role models provide sound advice, ongoing feedback, emotional support, emotional intelligence, self-awareness, higher self-esteem, better focus, stronger confidence.

Emulating their thoughts and behavior can improve your mind and teach you how to lead.

Keep in mind that you can learn from a bad leader as much as a good leader.

#5. When You Enjoy Solitude

Solitude and leadership often go hand in hand.

That is because, though leaders have family, friends, mentors and large network, they are the ones making the ultimate decision for their organization and not everyone will agree with their decisions.

However, solitude can give you time to think, to understand who you are and how you want to lead.

Leadership is also having the power to stand alone.

Leadership is also having the power to stand alone. - Vanessa Sylvester Click To Tweet

#6. When You Find Your Purpose or Renew Your Vision

You need to know why you work and your team needs to know why they work for you.

It is the vision that leads you and propels you forward, that wakes you up in the morning, that drives your performance, that is communicated to your employees, that gives meaning to your actions and decisions, and that leans on your belief systems.

Leaders with a vision are ambitious and satisfied with their lives, become hopeful and optimistic about the future, invite change, and select their employees according to their strengths and not their weaknesses.

They are also daring and don’t fear failure, are emotionally invested in their goals, flexible, persistent, resistant to social pressure and are convinced of their future success.

With purpose, leaders can easily overcome adversity. - Vanessa Sylvester Click To Tweet

#7. When You Have To Chose Being Like Vs. Being Respected

I am sure that at some point, you have realized that you get more things done when your coworkers like you.

However, in these situations, you can quickly become a people pleaser and lose the respect of your coworkers.

There comes a time when you have to decide whether you want to be liked or to be respected.

#8. When You Experience Different Cultures

You have experienced different cultures and are now culturally sensitive.

Cultural sensitivity is being aware that everyone is not the same. It means being able to learn from different people, to understand their backgrounds, to collaborate and cooperate with them, without being judgmental.

Cultural sensitivity means viewing everyone as a unique individual. It promotes unity and has become a skill that is most useful in the world of today.

You are now capable of adapting your leadership and communication style to every single member of your team.

You are also capable of shifting the focus from yourself to your team.

#9. When You Thought You Knew It All 

Not because you are the leader, that you have all the solutions or are always right.

In fact, being a leader is being placed in a position of service and humility.

To be a humble leader:

  • Be confident about your own capabilities.
  • Take the time to think and to come up with a solution.
  • Understand that being a leader is not about being right.
  • Give people the time to think for themselves and to make their own mistakes.
  • Acknowledge that someone on your team may have better ideas than you do.
  • Learn to ask for help and to detect if someone needs help.
  • Learn to ponder your responses.

#10. When You Have Foot In The Mouth Syndrome

Sometimes, we say whatever comes to our mind.

Other times, we blurt out things that we don’t mean but we haven’t measured the real impact of our words.

In these moments, we understand that we should be quiet, that we should learn to speak less and listen more.

#11. When You Get Caught Up In Office Politics

Office politics is often badly perceived because it can be cruel, calculated and manipulative.

Sometimes, office politics is a dangerous and corrosive game but it is a game. It is part of human nature, a social activity, a marathon and not a sprint.

Other times, properly navigating office politics can give you access to leadership opportunities and promotion.

Once you have experienced office politics, you become aware of the power play, of how you speak and listen to people.

You start making sure that you are robust, are not dependent on people or other external factors, that you are emotionally detached from your work and that you can clearly separate your identity from your job.

#12. When You Have To Deal With Toxic Coworkers

We all have been exposed during a period of time to annoying, hateful, toxic coworkers who can drive us crazy.

Whether it’s confronting a team member about their behavior or their performance, toxic coworkers can take a toll on you.

However, it can also help you grow and become a better leader.

#13. When You Have Identified Your Core Leadership Values

Core values are principles that build your character and that define who you are deep down.

In life and in the workplace, your core values will definitely be put to the test.

For example, some people will not hesitate to lie on you or to sabotage your work to advance their career.

Consolidating your core leadership values requires hard work, determination, daily practice and self-discipline.

#14. When You Welcome Change

If you have experienced drastic change in the workplace, you know that is better not to resist it.

Change is a part of life, is a constant and is inevitable. Change shakes things up, disrupts old habits, breathes new life into the workplace and into any project.

Furthermore, it has the ability to stimulate interest in your job. It also creates an opportunity for promotion and to develop new skills.

Welcoming change teaches you to:

  • Be a catalyst for change and to champion innovation.
  • Regularly get outside of your comfort zone.
  • Handle feedback, setbacks and opportunities.

#15. When You Assist Training Programs

You have been to different seminars and courses and realized that you have acquired so much skills and tools in such short time.

You have also met like-minded people who understand you vision.

Last Words Of Advice!

There are various ways that a leader can learn new skills and can learn how to lead.

Every experience is an opportunity to test your skills and to learn some new ones.

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

13 Signs You Are Meant To Be A Leader

Sometimes, our circumstances don’t match our inner thoughts and beliefs about ourselves. Sometimes, we haven’t figured out who we are yet and we are leaning into other people’s expectations of us.

Sometimes, we believe that our personality will be rejected when it is our character that counts. Other times, we notice that one type of leadership is thriving and don’t believe that we can level up.

So, this is written as a reminder to those who doubt themselves and who are actually meant to be leaders.

Wondering whether or not you are meant to be a leader?

13 Signs You Are Meant To Be A Leader

Western society promotes bad leadership in corporate organizations. It seems that “evil leaders” win and appear smarter and more successful than “good leaders”. Though these organizations function well and get results, they become more and more toxic to work in.

These organizations have to subsequently provide trainings and team building exercises to counter the effect of negative leadership.

What we need are effective leaders with great character. Most people want the title, the power but don’t have the character, the values or the attitude.

You are definitively meant to be a leader if…

#1. People naturally gravitate to you and ask you for your advice

Have you been standing in the streets, people come up to you for direction? In the grocery isles, people ask you for products? At work, people ask you for help on their project that you know nothing about?

People ask you for advice everywhere you go. That is because you seem approachable, like you have the answers to their problems and like you will not retain any information.

#2. You have a clear vision and a direction for your future

You have a vision for your future and you have the conviction that your dreams will come through. You dream so big that your dreams seem almost impossible.

Sometimes, you may not know what you are doing but you sure know where you are going.

Also, you may not be able to immediately put your vision into action but you are sure that it’ll come through, you know how to apply yourself, you know how to trust your gut and to put your best foot forward, and you know how to find the people to help you achieve your goals.

#3. Your character is remarkable

You have outstanding character and people model their behaviors on yours.

This means that you are self-disciplined, you stand up for what is right, you walk with integrity, you are slow to anger and demonstrate patience.

Furthermore, you have a strong moral compass. Even under pressure, you have to do what is right so you can respect yourself, love yourself and sleep at night.

#4. You love to learn

You are eager to learn, to explore and innovate. As a matter of fact, you ask tones of questions and you are an ever evolving being.

You have learnt from your employees, from bad leadership and from good mentors.

In addition, you don’t retain information, you are able to speak frankly and openly.

#5. You see people strengths and weaknesses

You see people strengths and weaknesses and you place them in the areas of their strengths.

Indeed, when you are a leader, you see people for who they really are and for what they can bring, you don’t make assumptions.

On the same occasion, you know where your strengths lie, where they will be complementary and where your weaknesses would hold people back.

Finally, you surround yourself with people who make you better and who complete you.

#6. You follow your own rules

You beat to the sound of your own drums. You don’t follow social rules and you think outside the box.

You don’t care about what people have to say about you, you go after what you want, indifferently to social expectations, to your circumstances and to stereotypes.

#7. You are a problem solver

You understand that there are several ways of doing one thing. With you as a leader, people are most likely to take risks, to innovate and are less afraid of making mistakes.

You have a lot of life experience, you find solutions to problems by asking people or by experience. Good or bad, you are grateful for your experiences and you are now wiser.

#8. You are resilient

You hurt like everybody else, you feel people pain but you are capable of withstanding adversity and of recovering quickly. In other words, you can take a licking keep on ticking.

#9. You are an equal opportunity leader

You treat everyone the same: you believe in fairness, equality and in equity.

You don’t make assumptions about people and their behavior.

#10. You are a people person

You are a people person: you build great relationships, motivate people to be better and to do better.

Furthermore, you don’t assume power or influence over people. You just lead when it is needed, show appreciation for people and you don’t hug the spotlight.

At last, you do not let negative energy permeate into your life and you leave your emotions at the door.

#11. You like to help

You like helping people, giving  them the information that they need to succeed, even if they didn’t ask for help.

In your opinion, helping people is incredibly gratifying. You don’t do it for them to like you. You did it because you were needed and because you want the project to move forward.

And, you are humble enough to ask for help.

#12. You are innovative

You are constantly dissatisfied with the current system. That is why, you love innovation and you inspire others to innovate.

#13. You are cognizant of office politics

You know everything that is happening in your office and you know everyone by name.

However, you don’t judge your employees, blame them for their mistakes or gossip about your employees with your own employees.

You notice those who need training, those who hate their job, those who outperform, and those who underperform.

Basically, you understand office politics.

Last Words Of Advice!

Mots of the time, people and parents, even with the best intentions, want to direct your life. Then, we listen and achieve what people expect of us.

A leader, recognizing the value of people close to him or her, taking into account the opinions of others, recognizes that their own dreams supercede all that.

 

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

7 Pragmatic Principles Of Office Politics

There are laws and principles that govern the workplace. We can either ignore them, acknowledge them or abide by them.

These laws and principles are the most visible when someone has been promoted, is moving forward or a new boss is in town. Some appear to be jealous, some try to quickly affiliate with the winner, to show their allegiance. Others are quick to sabotage and to compete.

I am not one to willingly participate in office politics. However, in my opinion, because knowledge is power, the best way to avoid politics is to know the rules. I like to know what is happening, how to read a room, to always be aware of my behavior, and to prepare myself for what is coming.

This advice is also valuable for minorities who encounters western group think in the office, who need to be realistic about their situations and want to understand how to advance themselves, how to protect themselves.

Wondering how to navigate office politics and whether or not you should be interested in it?

7 Pragmatic Principles Of Office Politics

What is office politics?

Office politics is a human concept and is inevitable. It is also very necessary and will go on whether your participate in it or not.

In office politics people seek power, leadership, influence and/or control of other people, more responsibility on their job.

Office politics is a particular hard skill because it requires that you control your primitive, impulsive responses to different situations and that you stay in high alert at all times.

The Perks Of Office Politics

Political animals in the office usually get what they want, to evade conflicts and sometimes create them between different individuals. Political animals:

  • Have influence. They build healthy relationships, even with toxic individuals.
  • Recognize the agendas and powers at play in any relationships.
  • Get the best projects, get promoted, get pay raise and other rewards.
  • Are trusted for their opinions.
  • Get credit for their hard work.
  • Get their career on a positive track.
  • Have the ability and the tools to deal with opposition and usually wins in a conflict.
  • Conserve their energy and focus it on worthwhile issues.
  • Avoid being blindsided or facing unpleasant outcomes.

What We Hate About Office Politics

Office politics is often badly perceived because it can be cruel, be viewed as being calculated and manipulative.

Sometimes, office politics is a dangerous and corrosive game but it is a game. It is part of human nature, a social activity, a marathon and not a sprint.

It is often used to sabotage, to manipulate, to deflect or to create a conflict between people.

Therefore, it is not for the faint of heart. Before starting, you must make sure that you are robust, are not dependent on people or other external factors, that you are emotionally detached from your work and that you can clearly separate your identity from your job.

Furthermore, keep in mind that abusing power on the long run does not lead to success.

Principle #1: Defining your purpose

Having greater goals in life will help you sustain and overcome opposition, avoid being pushed around by people or events. Your ultimate goals can be:

  • staying at a company and getting your pay check to ensure your lifestyle and to guarantee financial stability.
  • staying at a company, evolving, building healthy relationships
  • Living the company and finding better

Either way, set realistic goals, expectations for yourself. Next, stay focus on your goals, use your goals to guide your decisions and your behavior.

Principle #2: Know your strengths, weaknesses and limits

Politics and power will challenge your weaknesses.

Understanding your strengths and weaknesses will help you assess your worth, appreciate your contributions at work and determine whether or not you can run with horses. This will also help you identify them in others, understand them, maximize their potential and forgive their weaknesses.

To be effective at office politics, don’t directly demonstrate or enunciate your strengths or weaknesses. It is best to wait for the right moment to do so.

In addition, you must seek to enhance your performance, your productivity, to develop competencies that are hard to acquire or hard to replace. and to deliver great results. Then, discreetly promote your results.

Principle #3: Maintaining your leadership capabilities

It is important to learn to keep your peace and your composure at all times by seriously controlling your emotions. This demands a lot of discipline and will help you grow as a person.

Furthermore, lead by example and take care or yourself first. Great leaders have power but stay humble and don’t abuse it.

Seek understanding

To help you manage people, conflicts, to adopt the right behavior, to estimate your position and status:

  • Understand the company culture, values and principles.
  • Understand the people who you work with, estimate their boundaries and assess their attitudes.
  • Believe that hierarchy exist and is gladly enforced in the workplace. This means that you must, at some point, show deference to your “superiors”.This doesn’t mean that your “superiors” have greater character, greater skill sets or greater vision. However, no matter who you are, you won’t be able to freely speak your mind, to make your own decisions, to control your assignments.

Discipline your words and your thoughts

  • Stay away from gossip and rumors.
  • Watch what you say and how you say it.
  • Give substance to your speech.
  • Monitor your behavior at all times.

Discipline your emotions

  • Get rid of your ego and nurture your sense of humor. If you don’t know something, say so and don’t fake knowledge.
  • Don’t waste your time and energy on useless matters.
  • Keep your wits about you.
  • When someone slights you, don’t give them an emotional reaction.

Principle #4: Behave ethically

  • Remain true to your core values.
  • Don’t expect to be treated fairly.
  • Upgrade your character in order to be unimpeachable from the start. People with low or no ethics are unsuccessful in the long run.

Poor character leads to abusive, aggressive, masochistic, sadist behavior and office politics.

When I was working for a long corporation, one person in the office was being bullied. I was asked, as a team member, to participate in the bullying and to force the person to quit.

Most of my team members, for fun or for fear of retribution, would engage in toxic behavior towards this one person, put down false complaints and manufacture false rumors as well.

Without doing the same, I realized that sadistically beating down on someone, engaging in toxic behavior were not aligning with my core values and wouldn’t allow me to sleep properly at night.

To solve the solution, I simply listened to the request, spoke positively about the person, suggested to them that they had to find a better position and found a better place to work myself.

What was your ethically questionable experience?

Principle #5: Building your network and gaining influence

Networking is an important process, especially if your are shy and introverted. Who you know will determine how far you will get.

Here are some tips below that will help you be unbothered, to gain influence and build positive relationships:

  • Protect your reputation at all cost. For instance, if you make promises, live up to them.
  • Have a positive attitude. Avoid being mean or offending people for sport.
  • Act or be confident. It is important to fake it until you make it, to dress confidently and dress for success.
  • Give your best on your job and put your best foot forward. You can even become an expert in your field.
  • Empathetic ally listen to your coworkers. This way, you will get invaluable information about the environment, be solution oriented and build strong relationships.
  • Look to be respected and not to be liked.
  • Seek to integrate the group before you seek to lead it.
  • Target people who can help you achieve your goals and let them know what you bring to the table.
  • Don’t worry what people say about you, don’t gossip or spread false rumors.
  • Avoid too much flattery. You will appear weak to  your peers, will erode their respect and the respect of the higher-ups.
  • Involve people in your decision-making process.

Principle #6: Friend or Foe?

It is detrimental to discern your friends from your enemies, your confidant from your comrade, your constituents from your compatriots.

Keep in mind that:

  • Not everybody is your friend and don’t expect your “friends” to have your back.
  • It is better to have allies than to have enemies.
  • Your enemies won’t stop at anything to block you from achieving your purpose.

In conflicts or challenging situations:

  • Always seek to diffuse tension.
  • Avoid taking sides, power struggles but don’t give in to enemies or attempt to please them.
  • Mind your business and don’t take anything personally.
  • Identify the toxic behavior and the solution for it.
  • Don’t stoop to the level of the perpetrator or please the naysayers.
  • Don’t play the victim or suffer unfair treatment.
  • Ask questions rather than giving answers or have a private chat with an enemy and try to bring them to your side.
  • If you are not in position of power or are not favored at your job, accept it and move on, especially if you don’t know how to maneuver the situation.
  • If excluded from a group, don’t attempt to fit in, just join a new one or leave the place.
  • If you are being openly criticized or insulted, don’t let that affect your self-worth or your work. Agree with the perpetrator without demonstrating emotion.

Principle #7: Change

To handle office politics, one must learn to appreciate change and adapt to it.

  • Stay present, stay resilient and robust to conflicts and change, to your own emotions, to the emotions of others.
  • Learn to deal with change and quickly recover from your blows.

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.