What’s holding you back from taking the first step?

Part of being a high performing leader is ensuring your staff members are comfortable in their working environment, as well as being supportive to watch them grow and take their first step to success. By comfortable, I don’t mean that the desk is at the right height or the chair is well adjusted! For many new employees, this may be the first job they have taken on since leaving school/university or they may return to work after maternity or another break from work. Even if they are moving from job to job using familiar skills, there will be some anxiety about fitting into a new working environment and making a good impression.

How can you ensure your employees aren’t afraid of taking their first step within your organisation?

  1. Failure

For many employees, the fear of failure is a real inhibitor that prevents them stepping out of their comfort zones to achieve more and greater things. As a leader, it is your responsibility to instill a culture that your team knows that failure is never the case. It is a side effect of ambition and risk, and presents a development opportunity. It’s crucial that your team feels comfortable enough in their working environment to take the necessary risks to succeed. Not only will it be a huge benefit to them in terms of job satisfaction, but also to your company in term of loyalty and productivity.

  1. Labelling efforts

As a leader, you should ensure that your employees feel free to grow within their working environment and have opportunities to progress. Many employees may feel anxious that they aren’t up to standard and fall victim to labelling themselves with negative terms such as ‘stupid’ and ‘not good enough’, so they never feel as though they can take their first step. Encourage your team to stop the use of negative language when talking about the quality of someone’s work. Focus on the positives, how it can be improved and whether it presents new opportunities or possibilities.

  1. Mentoring and coaching

The Daily Telegraph had an interesting article this week about someone who had done very well at school and university but had suffered during the transition to work here. The article points out that people who are intelligent and have got good results in their education are often not able to ask for help because they have never had to before. Being told that something isn’t good enough is a new and difficult experience for them. Think about how you can support new team members whilst they get up to the expected performance and who you can buddy them up with to ease their transition into your organisation.

All of these points are part of the culture that exists in your organisation – and that culture starts at the very top. When was the last time the leadership team of your organisation discussed any of them?

If you would like any other information on becoming an inspirational leader in your workplace, please take a look at our blog.