- Leadership Foundations: Learn from mentors, accept mistakes, and build key management skills.
- Career Proactivity: Show leadership potential through initiative, risk-taking, and continuous learning.
- Leadership Pitfalls: Avoid overconfidence; focus on humility and engaging with team expertise.
- Goal Setting: Align career goals with personal values and interests, reassess regularly.
- Networking Effectively: Treat networking as mutual research; focus on others and reciprocal help.
- Professional Growth: Stay curious about hidden opportunities, expand networks, and explore new possibilities.
Leadership Coaching Tips
Join us in a practical discussion with Tammy Gooler Loeb, an expert in Career & Executive Leadership Coaching. In our conversation, Tammy offers straightforward advice on building leadership skills for new managers, setting achievable career goals, and effective networking strategies. Her guidance is especially relevant for professionals aspiring to grow and adapt in today’s dynamic job market.
I’m just starting in management and feeling a bit lost. What should I do first to build my leadership skills?
“As a first step, reflect on your favorite leaders – identify the attributes that stand out to you characterizing the effectiveness of their leadership style and practices. Next, identify individuals you know who could potentially be available to you as mentors or in an advisory capacity, whether formally or informally. Create your own board of advisors as a group of people who you can engage to ask questions, get advice, and learn about resources that could support your work.”
Even though I’m not in a management role yet, I want to show I’ve got what it takes. Any tips?
“Show up, take initiative and responsibility with new projects and be willing to take a few risks, make a few mistakes and be curious, be a learner.”
I’m worried about making rookie leadership mistakes. What should I watch out for?
“Don’t think you have to know more than everyone else. It is ok to admit when you are less familiar with something and to ask open, curious questions that show your interest and respect for those who have more expertise than you have. “
How can I make my leadership potential shine in my resume and during interviews?
“Highlight the areas you took initiative in, and how you supported others’ learning in the process to create positive results.”
How to Set and Achieve Career Goals
Setting long-term career goals feels overwhelming. Where do I even start when I’m not sure about my path?
“Focus on what is most important to you, your core values, and the kinds of activities and engagement that you most enjoy. If you can describe your core values and your most enjoyable activities in a professional or work context, you are off to a great start.”
I want to aim high but stay grounded. How can I balance ambitious and realistic career goals?
“You will know if you are losing that balance if you find yourself feeling conflicted about the activities you are doing or the environment in which you are doing them. You will feel as if you are having internal arguments with yourself and finding it increasingly challenging to make decisions with a clear mind. That will be a signal that you are losing ground.”
With things constantly changing, how often should I be reassessing my career goals?
“Rather than reassessing your career goals, you should always have a plan A, plan B, and a plan C. Plan A is your ideal job role, that which you most want and is aligned well with core values and interests. Plan B is your back up plan; it is a good choice that enables you to take care of yourself and still has many good attributes for your career. Plan C is making sure you have a plan to bring in cash if it boils down to needing cash. You need to have these different plans mapped out so that you are ready to take care of yourself regardless of the circumstances.”
Strategies for Professional Growth and Career Development
Networking is a big buzzword – what are some real, effective ways to network?
“I think of networking as research. It is an important way of getting the information you need that you do not already have.
It requires you to be interested in others much more than worrying about how you will present yourself. Learn about other people’s jobs, companies, markets, likes, dislikes, and ask them for advice. Also ask them how you can be helpful to them. You only need to share a few key points about your interests and the type of company culture you are interested in before asking them if they have any suggestions of other people they would recommend you speak with. The more you show an interest in others, the better off you will be.”
What daily habits or practices do you think are key for ongoing career growth?
“Always be open and curious about the possibilities of what is out there in the hidden job market. Focus on other people and expand your network constantly.”
Any final advice for someone feeling stuck in their career right now?
“Don’t do this alone! Lean on your board of advisors, hire a coach, get outside of your own head, and beware of thinking too narrowly about what is possible.”