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How to make the transition from manager to leader

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March 26, 2012

Contact: Elizabeth Hall, Senior Web Editor
(800) 543-2055  (703) 905-8000

Business Alert: How to Make the Transition from Manager to Leader

Falls Church, Va. — Almost any head of a company or CEO will concur that great leaders aren’t born, they’re made. However, not every manager can be an exceptional leader. Going from a manager to a leader involves inward reflection and certain intrinsic values (such as attitude and thoughts). Discover five key questions corporate managers should ask themselves to become a great leader.

According to Business Management Daily contributor Mike Winstanley, “True leaders look inward every day and take stock of themselves. As simple as it sounds, it’s the step most overlooked by managers in their journey to becoming leaders.”

Winstanley adds, “That’s why managers who aspire to be leaders (and, believe me, there is a difference) must constantly ask themselves thought-provoking questions and answer those questions honestly.”

Here are five crucial questions Winstanley suggests every manager who wants to be a leader should ask themselves:

1. What does “it” look like? Many people struggle with their leadership abilities because they’ve never stepped back and thought about what it means to truly be a leader. Ask yourself the question, “What are the characteristics embodied by leaders I admire?”

2. How’s my attitude? How do you feel about your job and employer? If managers think their working conditions stink, they’re underpaid and their bosses hate them, they’ll pass this attitude on to their employees. Attitudes are contagious, and attitudes affect behavior and job performance. As a leader, you have to be conscious of your attitude’s impact on your team and the people around you. Then work to eliminate the negative behaviors that result from it.

3. How do I stack up? Do an honest self-appraisal. Rate yourself on a scale of 1-10 as to how well you think you’re doing on each task on a daily basis. That will give you a ballpark idea of where you’re at. Then ask yourself what a “10” looks like for each item. Put it into specific behavioral terms. This will give you a beginning picture as to what you have to do (or stop doing) to become a better leader.

4. What’s my real value? Managers must ask what value they bring to the organization. How do they affect the corporate bottom line? Remember, your company expects a return on its investment. Managers should assess their true value and put it in terms of how the company profits from the things they do on a day-to-day basis.

5. Do I believe? Do you truly believe you can become a great leader? If you have doubts, analyze why. Don’t blame your company or boss for holding you back. Honestly ask yourself if it’s inside of you to be a leader OR are if you have any fears of being a success or failure.

Winstanley adds, “Don’t try to change everything at once … it may be too overwhelming. Try working on one item at a time. Small steps make for an easier journey.”

Winstanley concludes, “Finally, remember that this self-analysis is what successful leaders do all the time. It’s part of their daily schedule.”

For more information and the full article visit www.BusinessManagementDaily.com.

Business Management Daily provides plain-English, actionable news, information and tips to busy professionals in the areas of human resources, leadership, management, administrative skills, office technology, employment law, tax and more. Subscribe to our free e-newsletters and download our free reports. Follow us on Twitter at @BizDaily or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.  

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