Becoming an effective leader
1.1 - Evaluate own ability to use a range of leadership styles, in different situations and with different types of people, to fulfil the leadership role
Activity: There are some key overarching responsibilities of the leadership or management role role. Download the document to reflect on your own approach to the responsibilities.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines being responsible as being "liable to be called to account."
As a leader or manager you are responsible for the things go well or not within your team. Even when someone else may have made a mistake, you are likely to be held accountable.
This is mainly because it is your responsibility to know what your team are doing and how. There can be a competition with your desire to trust and empower your team to do things and the need to know what is happening.
It is useful to hold in mind that whilst the benefits of trust and empowerment are clear, you are still responsible if things do not go according to plan.
This may be a challenge for the new leader as you establish what to question and what to let happen.
It is important that you allow some to time to understand the role of the team and what they are trying to achieve. It is important to avoid an temptation to blame others, regardless of whether you are new or not.
This does not mean that people get away with mistakes or inappropriate working. They should be held to account but with you and by focusing on the development. "What would you differently if you did this over again?" is a very different question to "Why did you do that?" Accountability should be about what to do again or not to do in the future. (This of course depends on the severity of the action. Gross misconduct may come with more severe consequences).
Be aware when you are trying to place the blame at others feet.
Be honest with yourself and with others.
Respond to others blame appropriately.
Having the respect and confidence of others is the key to successful outcomes as a leader. Trust is critical to successful leadership. It is important for the leader to trust his or her team(s) but, fundamental to a successful organisation, is trust in the leader. Effective communication and openness will make a significant difference to how the team perceives a leader: a competent communicator who is honest will be more likely to earn the trust of his or her colleagues.