September '15

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rv-pro.com SEPTEMBER 2015 • RV PRO • 107 their assessments and already know what skills they lack. And they have enough business acumen to realize that unless they improve themselves they will not get ahead." For them, regular consultations with mentors suffice. "Millennials, on the other hand, often do not know what skills they lack," Star says. As a result, they need a more assertive level of assistance. "Coaches can prompt Millennials to think through problems and find solu- tions, and that will help them grow faster." Plan for Success Debora, the star salesperson mentioned at the beginning of this article, had been promoted to a management position not because she possessed leadership skills but as a reward for great performance. That led to disaster. "You would not hire someone to be an accountant without accounting skills," Frankel says. "Yet, too often we promote people without relevant experience or training to important management roles. The result is that the promoted individuals often flounder and create discord within their departments." It's a common scenario that can be avoided with proper preparation. Experts advise employers to spot potential leaders by their ability to lead without the trap- pings of a formal assignment. Then make sure they get the mentoring or coaching they need to perform the demanding tasks of leadership. According to experts, the result will be a successful hire, a happy staff, and higher profits. 7 Tips for New Leaders So, you've been promoted to a leadership position. First, congratulations! You have been recognized for some commend- able attributes. Even so, chances are good that you feel a little nervous. Are you prepared for the challenges ahead? To help you succeed, here's some advice from the management experts quoted in the Buddy to Boss story: 1: Adopt a positive mindset "Make a commitment to yourself with words such as these: 'I deserve this and I will rally to be the most effective leader I can be. I recognize that I need to continue to learn and develop my skills so I can lead and mentor an effective team.'" — Richard Avdoian, founder and CEO of Midwest Business Institute 2: Don't abandon your buddies "Do not set yourself apart from people who were once your peers. You can still interact socially with them, but you will no longer be the one who tells all the jokes and closes down the bar. You can no longer gossip about co-workers or make jokes about those in leadership positions. You need to avoid acting in ways that others could poke holes in." — Lois P. Frankel, partner at Corporate Coaching International 3: Make other people big "Honor the bigness in others. Understand that you as the leader do not have all the skills and qualities other people have. Tap their expertise and wisdom, and let them know they are valued for qualities beyond job requirements and responsibilities. Create a board of advisors that meets periodically to examine best practices and collaborates to address and resolve problems." — Richard Avdoian 4: Handle the passed-over person "Have a conversation with any individual who was passed over for the position you received. Say something like this: 'The deci- sion was not about you but about our team delivering results for the organization. I need you to be at the top of your form.' Then get the person on your side by saying something like this: 'My job is to make you ready for the next time a promotion becomes available. Here are the things you need to work on so you can get the promotion.'" — Randy Goruk, president of The Randall Wade Group 5: Adopt a flexible management style "Not everyone responds well to the same management style, and you will need to alter your own to meet the needs of different people you are managing. For each person, ask this question: 'What do I have to do to make this person successful?'" — Johanna Rothman, founder, Rothman Consulting Group 6. Keep learning "One of greatest mistakes leaders can make is to think they have 'made it.' Then they are in trouble. Instead, they need to continually improve themselves. They must get help from men- tors or coaches, take classes and workshops and read books. They must always improve and be better prepared for the challenges ahead." — Randy Goruk 7: Get feedback "Always look for feedback. Search it out. Be open to the fact that you might not be managing in the way that people need." — Johanna Rothman

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