The best leaders teach others how to lead. That’s the circle of life in the work world. If you want your teams to succeed, they don’t just need to be good followers. They need to know how to be good leaders. Here are four crucial steps for turning your employees into leaders.
Set Clear Boundaries
People love knowing exactly what they need to get done. That doesn’t mean you need to micromanage your employees, but being clear about your vision and what needs doing can help your employees understand the end goal. When they clearly understand what’s needed, employees are more likely to help their fellow employees reach the same standard. We all like to show off our expertise. Knowing exactly what to do makes us an expert in what needs doing.
Set Larger Objectives
You don’t just want your employees to do what’s expected of them. If you want them to be leaders (of themselves and others), they need to do more than what’s expected. So show them what happens when they exceed expectations. Give them goals larger than the actual objective. Praise will come from performing more than was needed. They won’t expect that praise, but they’ll still deserve it. This will train them to go above and beyond all the time.
Set Faster Due Dates
Set due dates that are shorter than they actually are. Much like setting larger objectives, this will train your employees how to operate faster than they think they can. It will increase productivity, yes, but it will also demonstrate to your employees that they have more in them than they think. This can go a long way toward building confidence. And when it comes to leadership, confidence is key.
Use Gradual Development
Think of your employee’s development like a staircase. If you want them to reach the top, they need to hit every stair on the way up. Gradually make things harder. Slowly ask for more. Provide challenges that push them that little extra bit. Don’t do it so often and so fast that they burn out and reward them at their successes.
These steps will ensure your employees learn to be more than good followers. They’ll learn to be good leaders — of themselves and others. The more leaders you have at your disposal, the more productive and successful your team will be.