By: Kathy Kent Toney, President of Kent Business Solutions
Photo by: Dylan Hanna
That’s me in the picture, up front in an unflattering pose, clowning around. Oh well, it just shows how much fun I have playing guitar and singing on my church's worship team. Every so often, I get to lead the band!
I have learned so much about leadership through being the Leader of the Band. In my first blog on this topic, I shared some initial lessons learned as a new bandleader. Since I have a little more experience under my belt, I want to share some other things I've learned about being an exceptional leader.
If you missed the first blog, you can click here to read it.
So, let’s dive in! FYI – each step builds on the next:
1. Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
A couple of weeks out from the weekend of leading the team, I started communicating with Megan, the co-leader (vocalist), on possible songs. I shared the theme, ideas around setlist construction and got her feedback. I also sent an email out to the rest of the team, giving them that overall vision. Finally, I reached out to a new team member and let him know I was looking forward to having him on the team.
Lessons learned: cast a vision of where you want to take your team to help create a sense of anticipation and make sure they have all the information they need to fulfill the vision.
2. Trust Your Team Members
One thing Megan and I decided to do was to create a mash-up of two songs. I gave her some ideas but gave her free rein to construct it the way she wanted to.
After we finished our set, I let the team know how much I genuinely appreciated having them on the team.
Lessons learned: Build upon that strong foundation of communication—empower your team members by communicating your trust in their abilities. Also let them know you enjoy having them on your team.
3. Inspire Confidence in Your Leadership
I was thoroughly prepared for our set that morning, so I was confident in my ability to lead the team. When we ran into some technical issues during set-up, I was poised to handle them. However, we had only 35 minutes to rehearse before the service started, and it was our only rehearsal! I kept my cool and came up with workaround plans, and we quickly ran through all the songs. I even received a compliment from one of the team members for being such a good leader!
Lessons learned: Keeping open communication channels, emotionally investing in your team, and letting them know you trust them to do their jobs inspires confidence in your leadership. And having faith in your ability to lead is just icing on the cake. These are all hallmarks of a great leader.
Speaking about being a great leader, Michael Cantu and I are excited about our upcoming book launch, No-Nonsense Digital Transformation. We talk extensively about building exceptional teams and creating great cultures in this book, so it isn't just for digital transformation fans.
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