Every leader wants to be viewed as being “professional”. Maybe a better word for this would be “legitimate”.
When we are new to leadership , we work hard to establish ourselves, to prove ourselves and to be respected.
I’ve noticed that many young leaders expect this to happen immediately. It doesn’t.
Being accepted as a leader, or as a “legitimate” leader takes time and it takes some work.
Here are some tips of things to think about:
#1) Whatever your job is, do it well
It doesn’t matter what you do. Learn it, know it, do it well, and work at doing it better.
#2) Be known for your integrity
Do the right thing, no matter what. This includes conversations, ethical behavior and guiding principles.
#3) Don’t be self-promoting
Don’t use words to promote yourself. Use your work, your skills and your proven success.
#4) Be reliable
Do what you say you’ll do, and if you fail, don’t blame others. Just take it and move on.
#5) Listen more than you talk
Learn to listen to others. You can learn from them, especially when you ask good questions.
#6) Respect others
Accept others and be encouraging. They will reciprocate.
#7) Help your team
Be known as a helper and a supporter. When people can count on you, it changes the whole dynamic.
#8) Dress and act professional
First impressions aren’t always right, but if you want people to take you seriously, be sure to carry yourself that way, even if others aren’t.
#9) Be positive
People avoid people who are always negative, and that label is hard to get rid of. Don’t be a whiner.
#10) Never stop doing the 9 things above.
Just because you’ve “arrived” doesn’t mean you can slack off. Keep working hard, all of your life, on your leadership. You’ll grow and develop and others will too.