The term “Transformational Leadership” has gotten a lot of attention recently. But what does it actually mean? According to experts at Northeastern University, “This transformational approach to leadership relies on encouraging and motivating followers to participate in molding a successful future for an organization.” Les Stein, Ph.D., assistant teaching professor in Northeastern’s Master of Science in Leadership program, believes a truly transformational leader can enter a struggling or stagnant organization, analyze the circumstances, and articulate needed improvements almost immediately. He or she should then be able to guide the organization in defining or redefining its core values in a way that unites the group in a common effort.
If you’re ready to use Transformational Leadership to get the most out of your leadership team, here are some tips from Women’s Business Daily.
- Give very clear instructions. When dividing up the work, write out instructions for the team members to follow as they work on their part of the project. If they aren’t familiar with this company’s particular workflow, they can use this opportunity as a learning experience so they can be more self-reliant in the future. While it’s important that you are available for questions, the more clearly you lay out the instructions, the less time you’ll have to spend assisting and fixing mistakes due to miscommunication later.
- Hold check-in meetings to evaluate progress. After the first meeting, don’t just let the group members run free to work on their own. Set up one-on-one or group meetings at crucial checkpoints so you can assess the progress of the team and clear up any confusion any members might be having. If people are behind or ahead of where they should be according to the timeline, adjust the future goals to accommodate for the change in pace.
- Be accessible for questions. If you say you encourage questions, mean it. When someone approaches you with a question, be ready to accept that question so they are encouraged to come to you for help in the future. If you are not immediately available to help, thank them for coming to you, and let them know that you’re in the middle of something and will come to help them as soon as you are available. The best practice is to give them an accurate time frame, so they know whether or not to just wait or to start working on something else to pass the time.
- Give assistance, but don’t micromanage. While this style relies on you being available to assist, you want the team members to complete aspects of the job they feel comfortable with on their own. Let them be autonomous when they’re able to so they can experience intellectual stimulation, otherwise you’ll be completely overworked if you try to oversee the progress of every team member every step of the way. It’s a group project for a reason; there’s no need for you to try and do it on your own through them.
- Frame mistakes as a learning experience. If you’re working with a group that is new to the industry, there will undoubtedly be pitfalls, roadblocks, and mistakes made along the way. Don’t let your team members panic when they mess up; making mistakes is part of learning and growing. Let them learn and bounce back from their mistakes. These small failures will ultimately make them more accomplished and resilient employees.
- Give credit to the whole team for a successfully completed job. When someone is in charge of a team, it’s common for the accolades and thanks to go to the project leader. However, it’s important that you give credit to the hardworking team members who made the success possible.
Leading a team can be difficult, no matter what your leadership style. If you find you need more time to devote to running your business, VersaTel Solutions can help. Our team of HR, bookkeeping, and administrative experts can take care of day-to-day tasks for you, while you lead your team and grow your business. Contact us and we’ll work with you to make your business a success.