It is a pretty common occurrence in companies that certain people become leaders before they are actually prepared for that role. On one hand, it may be because the business has lost a crucial member, and someone has to come into their place. On the other, people often tend to work their way towards a leadership position because they want to. They propose that a new department gets opened so that they can lead it, or they go and start their own companies.
What is important to note is that no one becomes a good (and especially not great) leader with a snap of a finger. It’s a challenge that one must face, and there are many pitfalls that they need to avoid in order to make it happen. After all, this is the moment when that person is moving out of their comfort zone, and attempting to take up a role where they will either grow or fail.
Not being humble
Sure, everyone loves a good ego boost, and a position of a leader is definitely a big one. But it doesn’t mean that you should act as if you are above your employees, and hide your weaknesses and failures. You need to be able to comprehend when you make a mistake. After all, everyone does it, and it is pretty much the most important way for you to learn from your failures. If you really want to grow as a leader, you won’t attempt to cover up your errors and keep up the façade of “the perfect leader”.
Being humble is, of course, very important in terms of your staff as well. When your workers see that their leader is ready to accept failure, they will understand that it is normal, and therefore feel more confident about what they are doing.
Not providing feedback
The fact is that your employees do some things right and other things wrong. Quite often they are unable to tell the difference, and need someone to guide them. If you fail to provide feedback to your staff, they will keep making the same mistakes, and have a detrimental effect on your company’s productivity and success.
Furthermore, by not providing feedback, you are distancing yourself from others. This way people will either feel unmotivated to keep doing what they are doing, or misunderstand their positions and try to push their mistakes as right solutions.
Not acting as a proper leader
Now, while it is a fact that you should be approachable to your employee and show them that things aren’t as rigid as they may fear, it still doesn’t mean that you should be too friendly. Basically, you are still the one that has the position of the leader, and when the time comes that important decisions need to be made, you need to be seen as one. Sure, you may accept others’ suggestions, but in the end, it is you who makes the final decisions.
Furthermore, if you are too friendly, people might attempt to take advantage of it in some way. They might try to get some leverage so that a certain situation goes their way. Don’t allow this. Strike the right balance between being the leader and a friend.
Not being able to comprehend when it is time to bring down the curtain
A time might come when your company’s success will significantly drop, and you will in debt up to your ears. The worst thing to do at this point is denying the fact that it might be time for you to bring down the curtain. Facing that your company is at the end of the rope may be hard for some leaders. But, instead of running away from the fact, you need to actually be the one that takes action and set up a creditors voluntary liquidation. This way you will have time to prepare, and have an appointed liquidator as your aid and protection. You will protect your company’s reputation and even be able to purchase some of its assets in order to start anew.
You need to embrace the fact from the start that being a leader isn’t easy, and takes up a lot of responsibility. There is a variety of things that you need to do right, because if you don’t, your company and its efforts will suffer. You need to take your time learning how to properly act as your role. And, when things start falling apart, you need to be smart and ready to pull the plug.