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Top 3 Leadership Tips When Changing Jobs
Having moved for professional opportunities from Australia, to China and now to Hong Kong, I can say from experience that it’s one of the biggest challenges you can face in life.
For those looking to take a leap of faith professionally, whether it’s changing roles, moving cities or countries, to chase that dream job, here are 3 things I’ve learned for effective leadership when moving into a new role.
1. Listen, Listen & When You Are Finished Listening, Listen Some More
I know it sounds very basic, but in terms of where to start when taking on a new team, this has to be my number one! Spend time listening to your team, peers, leadership team, boss, customers, and anyone else who will talk. This will give you the opportunity to gain multiple viewpoints, build perspective and more importantly help you to learn the business quickly.
Listening will also help to build your credibility with the team as you take time to understand their challenges and eventually how you can help. I emphasise listening, as it is so easy to fall into the trap of speaking up too soon, only to later realise that your view has changed once you understand the full context.
2. Get To Know Your Team
Why your staff wants to work for the organisation (and then for you), is an incredibly important factor in terms of transitioning into a new leadership role. During these beginning stages, it is critical to get to know your team personally, as well as learn what their drivers and motivations are professionally. Depending on your team you may also have to take time to understand cultural differences to ensure you fit in - not the other way around (after all you are the new addition to the team).
3. Slow Down Your Decision Making
The old adage ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’ could never be more accurate in this moment of your professional career. Sure your natural instinct will be to come into the new environment and fix all the changes that ‘need’ to be made. It is important to resist that urge to try and add value from day one. Instead spend time listening and getting to know your team, which will improve your value in the long term as well.
Spend time creating a list of areas you feel are opportunities for development. As you continue with steps one and two, you will naturally establish priority areas which are business critical, and more importantly which areas are low value and return. Doing this you can avoid the traps of changing too much too early and burning early credibility you may have with your team.