Companies only last as long as leaders come to the forefront to take them in a direction of growth. That's why current leaders must train and teach future leaders to rise up and take over when the time is right. When you partake in leadership coaching or mentoring, keep in mind three important things your colleague must know as he works his way up the corporate ladder.
1. Explain Every Detail of the Business
Future leaders must understand details and nuances of the company. This includes getting to know every department, project, collaboration and important customer. Getting to know the company means developing rapport with employees, customers, support personnel and suppliers.
Although people are an important aspect of running a business, future leaders need to know about the technology that comes into play with the company. This means management software, automation programs, apps that let employees communicate, collaboration software and mobile devices that make processes more efficient.
Knowing the business isn't just about the company where the leader works. Allow your future CEO to attend industry events as opportunities to network with like-minded individuals. Teach the person how to stretch his wings by establishing a presence with influencers within the industry. Getting to know people outside of the company gives future leaders insights they may not find otherwise.
2. Help Leaders Understand the Difference Between Managing and Leading
Business leaders understand the difference between managing and leading. True leaders know that leading means working with, for and through people to get where they want to go in their careers. Enabling others to succeed, even more so than yourself, is the mark of a genuine leader who loves to see success no matter to whom it happens.
Managing means supervising others and delegating tasks to get things done. Although there's a time for managing as a boss, it's not entirely what makes a good leader. Teach your star pupil the difference between managing and leading.
3. Develop a Vision for a Leader's Future
Future leaders need to have concerns beyond the daily tasks of how a business works. These details are important, but all of them add up to a long-term strategy that a company follows. Impart the wisdom that becoming a great leader takes time. Just like large projects take time to complete, developing a business leader also takes some time and energy. Patience is the mark of a good leader, so this process helps a young supervisor to succeed on that front as well.
Future leaders must balance patience, empathy, self-awareness, emotional intelligence and adaptability. As you work through these three important things, all of these characteristics come out during the training process to help you teach people who show the potential for business greatness.
Photo courtesy of KCYMTCR at Flickr.com
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