Moving into leadership is probably one of the biggest steps you will take in your career. Leading up to this promotion you will already have registered many achievements. Despite this, when people step into a leadership role for the first time they can suffer from a dip in confidence and experience lots of doubt.
For this reason, you should not be surprised if you feel just a little bit uncomfortable. If you don’t you are probably either playing it safe and staying in your comfort zone, or in a role that lacks challenge.
As you make the transition or aspire to make the transition into leadership, how can you retain your self-belief?
● Recognise you have been promoted for a reason: When you were promoted someone, or more likely a group of people, believed in you. It’s unlikely they thought you were already perfect! They knew there were areas you needed to work on, but they saw your potential. Remind yourself of this when the going gets tough.
● Develop a learning mindset: When things don’t work out as expected, it’s easy to fall into the trap of viewing it as a failure. The truth is we all learn much more from the things we got wrong than those we got right. Make a conscious choice to reflect and learn from mistakes rather than dwelling on the disappointment. Keep taking action.
● Keep track of your successes: You will have many things that have gone really well. Keep track of them so you can refer to them from time to time. Notice what you did or how you behaved and how it contributed to your success so you can use the same strategies again in the future.
● Set challenging but achievable targets: You are probably someone who is highly driven. While this is a great quality to have, be alert to setting yourself up to fail. The targets you set should be a stretch but ultimately achievable.
● Be determined: Long-term success in leadership is a marathon, not a sprint. Quick results are rarely sustained. You have done well, but keep your progress in perspective. Keep the determination that got you the promotion in the first place to keep you going in the long term.
The bottom line is that it’s not just what you do that determines your success as a leader. Think about what you need to start doing to boost your self-belief and realise your potential.