What does a Leader In Transition need to be mindful of?
This was inspired by a recent coaching session covering a topic that relates to many of my readers, so I hope you discover some insights to support you in times of transition. Many thanks to David Rock for teaching me and developing the Neuroleadership Institute of which I’m grateful to be a member.
I’m coaching a business owner who now owns 2 businesses. She needs to be very aware that besides the changes she faces personally – there are others in her world who face changes (and perhaps challenges) because of her decisions.
A leader in transition needs to remember…
1. Your team and customers (all the people who’ve looked up to you) need to know that you care about them. This may seem obvious – but for many people, change brings great uncertainty and they’ll question within themselves everything they’ve believed thus far.
“People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” – John Maxwell
The team my client is leaving (in a managers capable hands) need to know that she cares. They need to feel important. She can move on because she taught them well.
2. They need a sense of certainty. There’s nothing certain in this world really (except death and taxes apparently) but she can give them a sense of certainty by sharing any relevant information – facts such as timing, phone numbers to call etc. “If this happens, then you do this, and if you need support – call me – or relevant person”. Systems/procedures are essential.
3. They need to be given the opportunity to ask questions, know exactly what their roles are, what the expectations on them will be, and how much freedom they have in making decisions and taking action.
The leader needs to know that without this understanding, some staff will take less action (and possibly let the team down) because they don’t want to “step on any toes”, while others may take more action, or more responsibility than appropriate.
4. The individuals in the team need a sense of fairness – yes we all know life isn’t fair but since we know the brain craves fairness, leaders need to do what they can do to act fairly and support those involved, and keep the relationship sweet.
Gone are the days of making changes in businesses and organisations and expecting people to “get over it” if they don’t like it. With all we know about the brain and effective communications, we can overcome most of the hurdles that present themselves. And besides the caring factor – who can afford to lose good people? Every business I know could handle more customers and wants to keep those they have and too often I hear leaders crying out for staff saying “it’s hard to get good people.”
Change brings uncertainty and can increase stress significantly – manage it well and your people will be grateful and will transition smoothly with you.
The new team which my client is building will have similar needs – which will be met through honesty and clear communication.
Note: Communications is not just what you say to them, it’s about listening.
Don’t settle for second best in your life and organisation!!
Cheering you on, Kerrie