Congratulations! You’ve been promoted to team lead. You have demonstrated that you are responsible, motivated, and trustworthy enough to lead. This is the role you’ve worked so hard to achieve, and you want to do it right. Here are three actions you should take immediately to ensure that your leadership is a success.
1) Get to know your team
You may be eager to jump right in to work in your new role, but don’t forget this incredibly important step. Get to know your team and encourage them to get to know each other as well. This will help you get a better feel for each individuals’ goals and work style and will allow you to be not only a more effective, but a more empathetic leader. This might mean planning a retreat, doing team building exercises, hosting virtual happy hours, or simply checking in with your team members to see how they’re doing at the start of meetings. Throughout this process, you should also allow your team members to get to know you and your values, goals, and expectations.
2) Get Organized
As team leader, you will have many new responsibilities – from motivating your team to keeping detailed reports of projects. It is easy to become overwhelmed at first, but you’ve got this! Start by defining the team goals, and from there you can work on delegating responsibilities, developing a timeline and checklist, and setting up a strong communication network. Which brings us to number three…
The importance of communication early in the game cannot be stressed enough. Often when conflicts arise in teams, they could have been avoided by better communication. Take the time to check in with your team members and make sure that everyone is on the same page. When in doubt, over-communicate. Setting up a foundation of open communication will help to avoid misunderstandings and poor outcomes later on.
Being a team leader comes with many responsibilities, but also many opportunities. This role will take your career to an exciting new level, but it’s normal for you to be a little nervous, after all it shows that you care. You’ve worked hard to get to this point and have proven that you’re up for the task. Well done for all your hard work! Taking these three initial steps on becoming team lead will set you up for success.