As a leader, you are often responsible for helping navigate your team through intense times of change and stress. It’s important that you be an example of courage for your team to follow in order to navigate these challenges effectively. Here are 7 simple ways to bring out your inner Lioness Leader and show courage under stress:
Take the necessary action. Often times in stressful and challenging situations people are unwilling or unable to make a decision and take action. This is especially true when personnel issues arise. If you have a poor performer on your team be willing to first and foremost TELL THEM! Be clear and specific about what they can do to improve and when you need to see improvement. If your employee fails to shift in the allotted time be willing to make the tough call and help your employee find something they are better suited to do. Your team will appreciate your decisive action and the clarity with which you give feedback and set expectations.
Don’t be an ostrich. Ostriches stick their head in the sand to avoid what’s happening around them. As a lioness leader, be willing to face challenges head on. Craft an action plan designed to move you and your team forward.
Communicate Clearly. If you “beat around the bush,” it may signal that you lack the confidence to say what needs to be said, which may decrease your team’s confidence in you and your ability to make decisions. Have the courage to have authentic conversations (even when they’re difficult). Your team will admire you for this and know that they can trust you to be open, honest and clear with them.
Invite feedback. The higher you rise in your organization the tougher it may be for you to get clear, specific, and direct feedback about everything from customer opinions about your product to issues with your performance and leadership style. Be willing and open to how others see things. Ask for perspective and be open to their responses.
Be a change agent. In every way possible, be willing to share your innovation and creativity . Challenge the status quo with new ideas and be willing to be an early adopter of new technology and process change in your organization.
Share the spotlight. Lionesses aren’t stingy. Give credit and praise to those around you. Be willing to thank your team, mentors, boss and supporters for their help. This will inspire more great work from your team, which will have long-term positive impact on your overall productivity and results.
Drive accountability for yourself and others. Creating a culture of accountability starts by holding yourself accountable for the commitments you make. This act alone serves as both an example and a strong support for you holding your team and colleagues accountable. Now there’s no reason to be mean, and every reason to be clear and kind.
These 7 actions will help you to demonstrate courage in the most stressful of situations while enhancing your personal brand and professional reputation.
-Cornelia Shipley, Career Coach