The Best Collection of Advice for New Leaders

Welcome to
the August 5th, 2013 edition of the Leadership Development Carnival!
For this
month’s Carnival, I asked an all-star collection of leadership experts the
following question:
What is one piece of
advice would you give to a new leader/manager?

Ah, if only I
had this when I got my first promotion.

This list is a keeper! Bookmark it, share it with anyone starting out in
leadership/management, and anyone considering a leadership role. 

The Best Collection of Advice for New

Jim Taggart,
from Changing Winds: “My advice to a new leader is to follow your
moral compass and never stray from it, though there will be plenty of occasions
where your values and principles will be put to the test. Don’t get intimidated
by the intellectually “smart” people, who appear to have all the answers and
who sometimes compromise their values. There are have been plenty of instances
of this in the business sector and the public sector. And related to this is a
very good leadership book that I recently read, What
Keeps Leaders Up at Night
, and on which I wrote a review. The personal
challenge is to remain centered as a leader.”

Jennifer Miller, from The People Equation: “My advice is: don’t underestimate the power
of the grapevine. Public opinion is shaped quickly, so getting to know your
team and other key players is priority #1. I recommend that people new to a
leadership role do the following six things.”

Dan McCarthy, from Great Leadership: 25
Tips for New Managers

Frank Sonnenberg, from FrankSonnenbergOnline: “Trust is the cement that binds relationships, keeping
spouses together, business deals intact, and political systems stable. Trust is
not an abstract, theoretical, idealistic goal forever beyond our reach. Trust —
or a lack of it — is inherent in every action that we take and affects
everything that we do. Without trust, no company can ever hope for excellence.

Values on Which Trust Rests

S. Chris Edmonds, from Driving Results Through Culture:
“My piece of advice for a new leader or
manager: It’s NOT about YOU (the leader); it’s about THEM (employees).
#GreatBosses are servant leaders that create a safe, inspiring workplace where
employees THRIVE. Workplace safety and inspiration isn’t something that’s built
and DONE – they require constant tending or human foibles will push them off
How do leaders know how safe &
inspirational their workplace is? Observe and ASK. This blog post/podcast sheds
light on Four
Ways to Learn Your Organization’s Truth

Randy Conley, from Leading with Trust: “Understand the fundamental nature of
managerial work as I explain in “So You Want to be a Manager? Six Things to Consider Before
Taking the Plunge?”
and be clear on your motivations for being a manager – “So You Want to be a Manager? Part II – Five Wrong Reasons for
Becoming a Manager?”

Joel Garfinkle, from
“Professionals who want more from their
careers have to seize the initiative. Many of these individuals follow a series
of intentional steps to career success, such as the five tips detailed in my
blog post – 5 Surefire Tips for Job Advancement

David Burkus, from LDRLB: “Understand
the importance of team dynamics. As more and more knowledge workers are serving
on multiple teams, how much time the dedicate to which teams matters even more

John Hunter, from Curious Cat Management Improvement
: “Read The Leader’s Handbook by Peter
R. Scholtes and then put in on your bookshelf within arm’s reach of your
chair and keep referring to it. This
might be a nice kick start. Change has to start from the top. You are
the top of your system. Change your thinking, change your process – you change
your system. As soon as you start to modify your system you are going to have
an effect on the larger system.”

Anne Perschel, from Germane
: “If you want to lead, show
people you care more about the mission, vision, purpose, and their futures,
more than you care about gratifying your own ego and increasing your own
wealth. Post related to this advice appears here.
Movie to watch: Invictus (with Morgan Freeman starring as Nelson Mandela). Book
to read: The Soul’s Code.”

Mary Jo Asmus, from : “Letter to a young leader:

Bernd Geropp, from  More Leadership:
“If you want to be successful as an
entrepreneur or leader, if you want to grow yourself, if you want to grow your
business: Take a risk and get out of your comfort zone. Take action today!  Here
is my motivation blog post for entrepreneurs and leaders who want to take
action and step outside their comfort zone.

Dana Theus, from InPower
: “As a leader manager,
your primary job is to set direction, goals and boundaries (including resource
boundaries) and encourage your team’s creativity and exploration of the best
ways to accomplish the goals. If you’re doing your job right, they will be
creatively engaged and you will be personally challenged to find new ways to
support them. Supporting them should test your patience, your own creativity
and your ego. You should find yourself confronting the fear of failure
constantly and becoming comfortable with the idea that failure – yours and
theirs – can lead to amazing successes if you personally allow for it. You must
trust yourself and them more than you thought possible. If you don’t find
yourself challenged to allow for failure, trust more, put your own ego aside
and be creative, then you could be a better leader. If you do find yourself confronting
these challenges, then you’re doing all the right things in your exploration of
becoming a better leader, and so you will be. Being the best leader you can be
feels frustrating, exhausting, challenging and immensely rewarding. Don’t
expect it to be easy, but do expect it to be worth every ounce of effort you

Tom Walter, from Thomas J Walter: “Always understand that your human capital is critical to
success.  High employee engagement levels will drive high performance in
our organization. Books to read: It’s
My Company Too!
and The
Great Game of Business.”

Linda Fisher Thornton, from Leading in Context:
“I’d advise a new leader to intentionally
build a strong moral center. Two ways to begin doing that include
learning about how our thoughts tend to drive our behavior, and how important
it is to think beyond our own interests when making
decisions. A strong moral center helps us stay grounded in the midst of
chaos, and helps us bring out the best in ourselves and others.”

Chery Gegelman, from Simply Understanding Blog: “As an emerging leader there are so many
tools that made a significant difference in my development.  One of the
biggest was this quote – I kept it on my desk and consistently referred to it
and pondered it, “Control is not
leadership; management is not leadership; leadership is leadership.  If
you seek to lead, invest at least 50% of your time in leading yourself – your
own purpose, ethics, principles, motivation, and conduct.  Invest at least
20% leading those with authority over you and 15% leading your peers.

Dee Hock.  Blog Post: Real
Leaders Challenge The Status Quo

Bruce Lewin, from Four Groups’ Blog: “For public company CEO’s, I’d follow the advice of Eric Schmidt:
Absolute profits are going to increase every quarter…”

Wally Bock, from Three Star Leadership Blog: “You have two jobs. You must accomplish the
mission and you must care for the people. For more: Being
a Boss is Two Jobs in One

Julie Winkle Giulioni, from
“Forget that you’re signing their
paychecks. To inspire the best and get the most from others, treat them like
volunteers.  This point of view (and three tried-and-true strategies) can
be found at:”

Lolly Daskal, from “A new manager or leader must know how to
resolve conflicts: Why not try a simple exercise for a rapid solution: Leading
Through The Heat 

Jon Mertz, from Thin Difference: “My advice to a new leader is to know your
core beliefs. Answer the question: How will I lead? What values will I never
sacrifice? Write down your answer and lead by them. Review yourself at least

Karin Hurt, from Let’s Grow Leaders: Everyone
Hates the Boss:  And Other Opportunities
. Tell the truth”.

Mark Miller, from Great Leaders Serve: “I wrote a post specifically directed at new
leaders. Here it is: 6 Opportunities for the New Leader”.

Tanveer Naseer, from Tanveer Naseer Leadership: “Make time to forge relationships with those
you lead” more on this can be found in this article –The
Role Leaders Play In Developing Great Teams

Robyn McLeod, from The
Thoughtful Leaders Blog
: “Communication
is everything.  Pay attention to the words you choose and remember that
the position you hold at work can give your words more weight, so always be
responsible in your communication – what you say and how you say it.  And
for another twist on responsible communication, check out this post – Change a word, change everything – on how your own words
impact you, and check out our Effective Communication Checklist to see how you can
improve the way you communicate with others.”

Guy Farmer, from The Self-Awareness
: “I would advise a new leader to
listen more than he talks and be mindful that his behaviors build people up
rather than tear them down. I talk about this concept in Self-Awareness and the Clueless Boss.”

Mary Ila Ward, from The Point: Sound
Advice for Career and Leadership Development
: “Most important thing: Get to know and care about the people you are
leading/managing. Who are they, what they like and don’t like, what they are
most proud of, what their strengths and weaknesses are, how they see themselves
contributing to the overall success of the organization, etc.  Leaders
make more leaders and realize that results are achieved through people, not
task lists.  If you don’t know your people, they won’t do their best for
you.  Read Leadership and Self-Deception for more food for
thought on seeing people as people.”

Neal Burgis, Ph.D., from Practical Solutions: “The one piece of advice I would you
give to a new leader/manager is to Be
Consistently Persistent in being Extraordinary
means you have to get out of
your comfort zone more than you might want to. This can be achieved throughout
your entire organization.”

Mark Babbitt, from YouTern: “Never wait for permission to lead. Don’t
wait for the appropriate title on your business card; nor for the right
“powers-that-be” to notice you. All you need is a challenge to
resolve and a viable solution. Throw in some humble confidence and old-school
hustle… and others, regardless of age or seniority, will follow.”

Mary Faulkner, from Surviving Leadership: “Establish boundaries and accept that you
both WANT and DESERVE to be a leader. It will help change your thinking!”

Richard S. Wellins, from Talent
Management intelligence
: “Oprah
Winfrey tells Harvard grads that great leaders empathize and listen. At
Development Dimensions International, we couldn’t agree more and would give the
same advice to any leader. From our research, we have learned interpersonal
skills are the #1 reason many leaders fail.  If you want to build strong
relationships with your team and get work done, focus on basic skills such as
effective communication, listening, empathizing and involving others. Want to
be inspired? Click here to take a closer look at the
important role interpersonal skills play in leadership development. Click here to view Oprah’s commencement address.”

Mike Henry Sr., from Lead Change Group: “Find ways to make your best people successful. Choose who you support
and make them winners. As long as they become winners moving the organization
toward its goals, you can’t lose.”