5 reasons leadership can be very hard, especially for a first-timerMunira Rangwala
Congratulations! You've finally been promoted to a managerial position. At last, your ideas will be taken seriously and your expertise will be valued. While being a leader has its advantages, it also means facing a host of unexpected and anticipated challenges. Getting people to back a common purpose and maintaining a balanced perspective are just few of the challenges that leaders have to face on a daily basis. However, remember that the hardships will only make you a better leader. If you find yourself in difficult situations, don't be discouraged. Instead, put on your leadership cape and work with your team to find solutions to your problems.
Here are five reasons why being a leader is so hard:
Refraining from favouritism
Parents are allowed to have a favourite child but leaders aren't allowed to have a favourite employee. That's just how the world works. If you don't want to be accused of playing favourites, stop favouring one person over the rest every chance you get. Never base promotions or better working conditions on romantic involvements or close friendships. If your team members find that you're constantly helping one particular individual, they'll lose faith in your leadership.
Sparks are bound to fly between your team members over creative differences. You should trust your team members to resolve their internal conflicts on their own. If you try to broker peace, you might get accused of taking one person's side over another's. However, if the situation is spiraling out of control, it is your duty as a leader to resolve the conflict without either party feeling like they have been shortchanged.
It is against the law to discriminate against an individual on the basis of race, religion, gender, caste, or creed. A leader should pick up on subtle hints of discrimination and talk to the person doing the bullying. Good leaders are successfully able to maintain an open-door policy so that employees who are victims of any sort of prejudice can discuss the issue with their reporting manager without hesitation.
Reaching a consensus
Different people have different opinions and there is bound to be a creative conflict every now and then. This is where leaders step in. They help their team members compromise and reach a consensus. An effective leader presents all sides to an argument, while letting everyone's voices be heard. If there are concerns about a judgment call, he should address those concerns with utmost professionalism.
Everyone wants to be liked by their peers, and leaders are no exception. Sometimes, leaders walk a fine line between being a friend to their employees and being their boss. If you are too bossy, employees may become dejected and lack motivation. On the other hand, if you're too friendly, there is a high chance that your team may take you for granted.
The above-mentioned five factors are the inconvenient truths about leadership. However, if you approach these challenges in a timely and mature fashion, you'll earn brownie points from your team members as well as your seniors.