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The Difference With Being A Leader Vs An Everyday Employee.

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After being a ‘bank jock’ as one of my former clients put it, for the last seven years, I recently transitioned into a people leader role.

Going from a regular employee — who only has to worry about their own KPI’s — to a leader, has taught me a lot in a short space of time.

Leadership is very different to a normal career as you might have guessed. You can’t do what you did as a single contributor in a business when you’re a leader.

You have to think differently when you go from being an everyday employee to a leader.

Here’s what changes when you become a leader:


You must control your state.

As a regular employee (especially in sales) you can fly off the rails and operate from any state you wish.

As a leader, you have to learn to control your state.

When a customer escalates to you from your team, you have to control how you react. You’re supposed to be the bigger man or woman.

Instead of jumping to conclusions, you’re expected to use your emotional intelligence to understand the problem and stay calm in stressful situations. 
You can’t go and cry to your boss every time a problem arises. And problems will arise even more as a leader.

Knowing how to control your state will save you.

Keeping the bigger picture in mind and not falling for short-term emotional states is a skill you’ll have to implement quickly if you are to succeed.


You must confront your fears.

As a regular employee, you can hide behind others and go unnoticed. I learned this the hard way when I suffered from mental illness and didn’t confront the issue head-on.

I hid my fear of anyone finding out about my mental illness and it crippled my career.

As I transitioned into being more of a leader I learned how to confront my fears and even share them.

The best leaders are vulnerable and if you’re to become one, you’ll need to learn to confront your fears on a daily basis. Why? See the next point.


You must go first.

As a regular employee, you follow the leadership team and watch what they do first. You let the leaders make decisions and then you execute.

As a leader, everything starts with you.

Leaders must go first and that’s why you’ll have to confront your fears. Going first means feeling the fear and taking action regardless. You can’t let fear hold you back if you are to go first.

You must go first as a leader because it’s on you to set the tone and be the example of what’s possible.


You must inspire.

As a regular employee, you are the one being inspired. You look to mentors and leaders to inspire you and show you what’s possible.

As a leader, everything happens in reverse. Your sole job is to inspire people to take action and execute on the goals of the business. This is done through your own example.

“Your job is to use the challenges you’ve overcome in your own career and life to inspire your team to do the same”

You do this by sharing the following:

  • Huge failures in business
  • Health challenges
  • Romantic relationship issues and even divorce
  • Career gaps
  • Side hustles you started

You can also bring in third-party tools to assist such as Ted Talks, inspiring videos and online courses.

My favorite tool to use is to get colleagues to attend Tony Robbins events where they can be inspired face-to-face and be fully immersed in life-changing strategies.

Whatever you do, as a leader, you must inspire.


You must give first.

“To get people to do what you want, you first have to give them what they want”

This is the part many wannabe leaders mess up. Your job is not to dish out orders; your job is to find out what motivates the people who work for you and then help them hit their personal goals.

Once people feel like you have their back and they are well on the way to hitting their own goals, they’ll do whatever is required to help you hit your goals. It starts with you. Give first.


You don’t get to complain.

As a regular employee, you can complain all you want. It’s your bosses problem to deal with and to listen to.

Leadership is very different. Your job is not to complain but to identify issues (10%) and then spend the other 90% of your time solving those issues.

Going from a culture of complaining to problem finding, followed instantly by solution identification is not easy.

It feels good to complain and then do nothing.

As a leader, you’ll never do well if you complain yourself. You’re expected to have given up the game of complaining when you become a leader. You’re expected to be better than that.


You’ll have to be clear what you stand for.

As a regular employee, no one is going to necessarily ask you what you stand for on a daily basis. All that changes when you become a leader.

Leaders stand for something and they have a list of principles they lead by. I learned this the hard way when I interviewed for a leadership position and was asked what I stood for.

I fumbled around trying to answer the question and had not thought about what I stood for as a leader before. Now I’m crystal clear on what I stand for.

Here’s what I stand for as an example:

  • Everyone gets treated equally
  • I won’t ask you to do something I’m not prepared to do myself
  • I will inspire you to pursue whatever goal lights you up
  • I will help you write a clear career plan that we will follow up on fortnightly
  • I will inspire you through personal development
  • I will not abuse my power and use it for good
  • I will expect you to give back to the community in your own unique way
  • I will breed more leaders from my team

As a leader, you’ll need to stand for something and have a set of principles that guide you.


You’re responsible. The End.

The biggest difference between a regular employee and a leader I’ve learned is that you’re responsible. No matter who messes up, you’re expected to own issues and be responsible.

The buck stops with you and you can’t transfer the blame away from yourself like you can as a regular employee.

As a leader, you will fail and that’s okay. The key is to own your failures and admit them. After all, you’re paid more to be responsible. Responsibility is not easy, but that’s what leadership is.

“Leadership is not easy and that’s why we’re not all leaders”

The beauty is that being a leader allows you to grow more than you ever have before. Leadership is not something to be afraid of, but rather it should be embraced.

Don’t abuse your power. Use your power for good.

Transitioning from being a regular employee to a leader is one of the best decisions you’ll ever make.

Leadership will define you.

<<<>>>

If you want to increase your productivity and learn some more valuable life hacks, then join my private mailing list on timdenning.net

Aussie Blogger with 500M+ views — Writer for CNBC & Business Insider. Inspiring the world through Personal Development and Entrepreneurship You can connect with Tim through his website www.timdenning.com

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Success Advice

20 Ways You Can Become a Powerful Communicator

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Emile Steenveld Speaker and Coach

Some people seem to naturally know how to effectively communicate in a group setting. They can express themselves clearly and listen attentively without dominating the conversation.

Being a powerful communicator is important for several reasons, including building and maintaining relationships, achieving goals, resolving conflicts, improving productivity, leading and influencing others, advancing in your career, expressing yourself more confidently and authentically, and improving your mental and emotional well-being. Effective communication is an essential life skill that can benefit you in all aspects of your life.

But, don’t worry if you don’t naturally possess this skill, as effective communication is something that can be developed with practice, planning and preparation.
 

1.  Listen actively: Practice active listening by giving your full attention to the speaker and responding to what they are saying.

 

2. Use “I” statements: Speak from your own perspective and avoid placing blame or making accusations.

 

3. Avoid assumptions: Don’t make assumptions about what the other person is thinking or feeling.

 

4. Be clear: Express your thoughts and feelings clearly and concisely by getting to the point and avoid using jargon or overly complex language.

 

5. Show empathy: Show that you understand and care about the other person’s feelings.

 

6. Offer valuable insights: When speaking in a group, provide a valuable takeaway or actionable item that people can walk away with.

 

7. Be an active listener: Listen attentively and respond accordingly, incorporating your points into the conversation.

 

8. Choose the right time: Pick the most opportune time to speak to ensure that you have the group’s attention and can deliver your message without interruption.

 

9. Be the unifying voice: Step in and unify the group’s thoughts to calm down the discussion and insert your point effectively.

 

10. Keep responses concise: Keep responses short and to the point to show respect for others’ time.

 

11. Avoid unnecessary comments: Avoid commenting on everything and only speak when you have something important to say.

 

12. Cut the fluff: Avoid being long-winded and get straight to the point.

 

13. Prepare ahead of time: Sort out your points and practice them before speaking in a group.

 

14. Smile and be positive: Smile and nod along as others speak, to build a positive relationship and be respected when it’s your turn to speak.

 

15. Take responsibility: Take responsibility for your own actions and feelings.

 

16. Ask questions: Ask questions to clarify any confusion or misunderstandings.

 

17. Avoid interrupting: Allow the other person to finish speaking without interruption.

 

18. Practice active listening: Repeat what the other person said to ensure you have understood correctly.

 

19. Use your body language too: Use nonverbal cues such as eye contact, facial expressions, and body language to convey your message and build rapport.

 

20. Be aware of the tone of your voice: it should be calm and assertive, not aggressive or passive.

 

By keeping these tips in mind, you can improve your communication skills and become a more powerful communicator, which can help you build better relationships, achieve your goals, and lead a more fulfilling life.

I you want to learn how to become more confident in life then you can join my weekly mentorship calls and 40+ online workshops at AweBliss.com so you can master your life with more success.

 
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A blueprint for CEOs to draw a disciplined strategy

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Strategic thinking helps CEOs build successful businesses. It helps them establish everlasting enterprises. It is one of the key elements of decision-making. It is different from strategic leadership. It differentiates between leaders from managers.  (more…)

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How to Focus Your Mind on Your Goals in 2023 Constructively

In this world of distractions due to information overload, it has become a big challenge to focus our minds

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In this world of distractions due to information overload, it has become a big challenge to focus our minds on positive aspects and constructive activities. Sometimes we waste our precious time mentally and physically due to distractions arising out of technology. We must understand our priorities and learn how to focus on them religiously. (more…)

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