Do you dream of a thriving business that grows year after year and offers a legacy that you can pass on to future generations? If you want your company to excel, you need to raise up new leaders, train them in your company culture, and give them the skills to drive momentum.
How to develop future leaders in your organization?
The Small Business Administration estimates about 1.1 million new businesses open each year and another 965,995 nearby. The number varies, but in general, the number of businesses that open and close each year is enormous. What is the secret ingredient that makes one prosper and the other fail?
Often the core of a successful organization comes from the leaders within the company. How well they lead dictates how hard employees work for shared success and whether decisions help or hurt the brand.
If you want to scale over time, you need to cultivate new leaders and give them the freedom to make great decisions. Here are some of the best ways to cultivate new leaders in your business.
1. Cultivate a company culture of leadership
Early in their career at your company, people should have the opportunity to take charge. If your employees are constantly worried that you are sitting on their shoulder and watching their every move, they are likely not doing their best work or facing challenges.
Be confident enough in their abilities to allow them to work from home, set their own hours, and find solutions to problems such as scheduling or resolving a client’s needs. Encourage them to ask for help, but agree that they don’t do everything the same way you would.
2. Embrace diversity
When searching for future leaders in your organization, don’t focus on just one gender or race. People sometimes overlook the quiet employee, the mother of three who seems too busy to take a leadership course, or someone in a minority group.
creating a positive environment for women and minorities It starts by offering them the same opportunities that their male counterparts have in your business. Put yourself in the shoes of the young woman who has just given birth. She returns after a six-week maternity leave only to find Joe in the promotion she’s endured for the last five years, working overtime and putting her all into every project. Today, the same may apply to some parents, so don’t let temporary time off result in the loss of a valuable employee because they’ve been overlooked.
Think out of the box. Don’t overlook your talent because of family leave. Instead, how can you make it easier for them to work their way into a leadership role? Can you put them in charge of a hybrid team and let them work from home for a while? Request your opinion. As someone with leadership potential, you may have ideas about how you can contribute that you haven’t even thought of.
3. Start a leadership training track
Offer your leadership training to any employee interested in moving up in the company. While education often plays a role in how far you can move up in an organization, it shouldn’t be the only consideration. People sometimes have skills or experience outside of formal education that make them great leaders.
Let your teachers discover who has potential. Training your employees with new skills is never a waste. Even if the person ends up shying away from management, he will have learned valuable information that he can apply to team projects, by taking the lead on a design, or at other times.
4. Celebrate achievements and retain the best employees
If your best people are constantly leaving your company and going elsewhere for higher pay or more recognition, you’ll have a hard time promoting leaders within your organization. Take the time to show your workers how much you appreciate them.
Ask what would entice them to stay with your company. Some people want to be rewarded with cash bonuses, some want an extra paid day off, and some prefer to work remotely. A recent study showed about 25% of jobs will be remote by 2023.
People like to have at least a hybrid approach, where they can avoid a long commute some days of the week and really focus on their work, meetings, or training.
5. Cross-train employees
Rotate the positions held by your employees. While there is something to be said for feeling comfortable in your role, knowing what tasks others on the team are completing can help in a number of ways.
First, he gives his workers an appreciation for others. Second, if someone suddenly gets sick or leaves without warning, there will be others who can fill the void until they can be replaced. Third, if one of your employees assumes the role of team leader, he will understand the scope of work and job descriptions of each person in his group.
6. Start a mentoring program
Do you already have fabulous leaders in your company? Let them pass on their wisdom to the next generation of managers by mentoring younger employees. A mentoring program builds relationships and gives your young leaders someone to turn to when they feel insecure.
At some point, their current leaders will retire. You will retain much of their wisdom and the culture they bring to your company, because they will pass it on to their apprentices.
Teach your employees to excel
One of the best things about developing a company culture that breeds new leaders is that your employees will see that you want them to be the best they can be. It will give them the freedom to learn new skills, try things without fear of failure, and rise to the top of their company.
Eleanor is editor of design magazine. Eleanor was a creative director and occasional blogger at a prominent digital marketing agency before becoming her own boss in 2018. She lives in Philadelphia with her husband and her dog, Bear.