Nine Ways to Step Up as a Leader

By Greg Nathan posted August 12, 2021

I am enjoying supervising James, a psychology intern who has been working with us while completing his Masters at Deakin University on aspects of transformational leadership. Each Wednesday evening, James and I meet on Zoom to talk psychology and shoot the breeze on his latest insights.

Last night, he was telling me about the transformational leadership style. It occurred to me that, in these scary times of massive uncertainty, this is exactly what all of us in leadership roles need to be practising more.

I say this because transformational leaders inspire and motivate people to innovate and make positive changes that will keep a business relevant, fresh and growing. They also intellectually challenge their teams, and create personally rewarding environments of mutual professional growth.

As the social and business landscape continues to shift in unpredictable ways, people need to be supported and encouraged, and businesses need be adapting and transforming like never before.

There are several questionnaires and models that define transformation leadership, and with James' help, I have drawn on these to create the following nine behaviours. Whether you are a franchisor executive, a franchisee, or anyone leading others, you may find this a useful tool. To complete it, put yourself in the shoes of your team.

Transformational leadership checklist

To what extent would your team say you practise these behaviours?

1. He/she gives us reasons to feel proud that we belong to this business.

2. He/she shares examples of the positive difference our business makes.

3. He/she inspires confidence in us that we can achieve our work goals.

4. He/she encourages us to take initiative and find solutions to problems.

5. He/she spends time with us individually, coaching and developing our capability.

6. He/she treats us as individuals with our own unique strengths and needs.

7. He/she is generous, even if this means going against their own self-interest.

8. He/she gives us a sense of autonomy and control to make our own decisions.

9. He/she talks about the future in an optimistic and hopeful manner.

Faced with relentless uncertainty and change, a growing number of people are suffering from a sense of languishing, defined as feeling flat, lackluster and disconnected. The antidote may just well be a good dose of transformational leadership. What do you think?

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