That’s why you should always lead confidently, even at times when confidence is hard to come by.
When faced with a tough challenge, it’s normal to feel uncertain, and maybe even afraid. But it’s hard to inspire your team to rise to the occasion if they sense that you’re intimidated. You can project confidence by doing four things. First, demonstrate empathy for your team members. They want to know that you aren’t out of touch with what they’re feeling. Second, communicate your vision for the team — and that tough challenge. People need to have a clear sense of where they are headed. Third, set a direction for the team. Show them how you’ll reach the vision together. Last, give people proof. They need a reason to buy in to what you’re telling them, so offer evidence for your direction and optimism. Be specific, be personal, and reference the work that the team is already doing. This will build your team’s confidence — and your own.
Adapted from “How to Lead When You’re Feeling Afraid,” by Peter Bregman
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