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  • Writer's pictureJackie Booth

Five questions to ask yourself before you say YES to that leadership role

Updated: 7 days ago

Stepping into a new leadership role is exciting and rewarding and can make all of the hard work that’s come before it, worth it. It’s a true acknowledgement of your skills, experience and work effort.


However, it also comes with a unique set of challenges and responsibilities.


Whether you’re taking on a new leadership role in your current place of work or making a move to a new organisation, you’ll want to make sure you’re making the right move.


So, before you enthusiastically say YES to that new leadership opportunity, take a moment to reflect on these 5 critical questions.

 

5 questions to ask yourself about a new leadership role

 

1. Do you know who you are?

Understanding your values, beliefs and principles are key factors to consider when you’re going for a promotion or making a career transition. Knowing what’s important to you will ensure you can quickly determine if a new team or organisation will be a good fit for you, your expectations and how you work.


If it’s not, I can guarantee that you’ll not want to stay longer than you can justify the period of employment on your CV.


I’d encourage you to spend some time working out your workplace and leadership values.

 

Start by thinking about what you don’t want, then list the key values that are non-negotiable.

 

This could be things like:

●        working in an inclusive team

●       having a compassionate boss

●       wanting work that is challenging and fulfilling

●       requiring further promotion opportunities

●       knowing you’ll receive personal and professional recognition for your participation and contributions.


Think about past roles or projects when you were at your best, what made it possible?


What did you have in place that you’d want (or not want) again?


Add these to your list, too.

 

Be as specific as you want – these are the things that matter to you and may turn out to be the deal breaker to you saying YES!

 

Compare your list with the mission statements and values of the organisation you’re interested in working for.


Do they align with yours?


Are their values part of the culture and everyday conversation or are they just something on the website as a tick box exercise?


Making sure the job fits you and your needs, is as important as the employer finding the right person for the role.

 

2. Do you know why you want this leadership role?

Leaders who motivate and inspire others are ones who know their why and the reasons they want something; it’s their passion. Passion, ultimately, is what motivates you and shapes your purpose in your professional and your personal life.


When you know what you’re working towards and why, you’ll find it easier to identify whether the role, the people and the organisation you’re considering, will be a good fit for you.


Ultimately, you want to be reassured you’ll be able to achieve your career and leadership goals there.


When was the last time you thought about why you do what you do?


If you’re not sure, then try to reflect on those times when you were at your best or when you felt you’d made an impact.

 

Make a list of all the achievements you’re really proud of:

✔     What did you accomplish?

✔     What projects were you working on?

✔     What did you create?

✔     What strengths and skills were in play?

✔     Who were you working with?


Once you have your list, then consider what made you proud of your accomplishments.


Were you passionate about what you were doing? Or, was it just something that needed doing?


Leadership is easy when you’re passionate about something. It gives you the clarity and motivation to step up and step out.


When you’re contemplating a leadership role, it’s critical to know the reason why you want it.

 

3. Do you know where you’re going? 

An essential part of leadership is your ability to look forward and to have a sense of where you’re going.

 

Having a vision will support you as a leader to prepare for the future as well as keep you on track when things aren’t going as you’d planned.


When you reflect on your career, who’s in the driving seat? Often it will be your manager, your department director and, ultimately, your organisation.

 

How often have you created a vision for yourself or created a yearly plan that doesn’t align with the company’s targets and visions?


Have you ever thought about what your dream career looks like? It’s never too late to start.

 

 

I’ve had two significant career and leadership transitions - the last one 10 years ago when I decided to pursue leadership coaching. It actually became the next logical step because I knew where what was important to me, what I was passionate about and what I wanted for my future.


It wasn’t always this way, of course.


For most of my career, I drifted along and took opportunities that felt right or motivated me at the time. And they were right – I gained a great deal of experience and expertise along the way.

 

Think about where you’re at right now and whether the new role will align with both your short- and long-term career and personal goals.

 

4. Do you know the way you work?

You can easily research leadership styles and try to work out where you feel most comfortable, and authentic.


However, I firmly believe that the most important thing about how you lead is that you are true to yourself.


It’s impossible to consistently try to be something or someone that you’re not; it’s pointless and draining. When people feel you’re being disingenuous or they don’t trust or believe in you, then you can’t be an effective role model and leader.


Brene Brown said it beautifully, Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we’re supposed to be and embracing who we are.”


There are other leadership qualities that are also important to consider; how many of these would you say you have?


💎 You see the positives in people: When you give people opportunities to be themselves and encourage them with positive acknowledgements and a chance to succeed, then you are enabling them to unlock their full potential.

 

💎 You have empathy: Being able to put yourself in other people’s shoes is important as a leader. It’s a skill to be able to understand different perspectives and empathise in order to be effective.

 

💎 You listen: Great leaders are able to listen. And I mean properly listening where they give their undivided attention and listen on an emotional level.


We all know what the opposite feels like when people are distracted, don’t make eye contact, only want to listen to talk and not to learn.


Listening is a skill that once mastered will pay dividends.

 

💎 You are open to change: Leadership often means embracing and creating change in response to what is happening around you. You’ve probably seen people who have struggled in the face of change and have resisted rather than embrace it.


Think about how willing you are to grow, develop and move forward in the face of change.

 

If you can identify with these qualities then you are a leader, now it’s time to ensure the leadership role opportunity will allow you to use these skills.

 

5. Do you know who your team are?

The relationships you build with the people you’re working with and working for will be the main factor in determining whether you’ll be happy and fulfilled in any leadership role.


This is particularly true if you’re stepping up as a female leader into a new role or team. In my experience, women prefer to take a collaborative approach to their work, to feel part of a team, to know that they have the trust and support of team members and managers.


This inclusive approach ensures that everyone is part of the process and can play to their individual strengths for the success of the team as a whole.


When you look at any new leadership role, what is in place that will encourage this approach?


One of the main reasons people leave a role or an organisation is because of a sense of dissonance or conflict with the people they’re working with.

 

We’ve all worked with people who don’t contribute as part of the team, take the lion’s share of any credit, patronise, discredit and even bully junior members. They’re destructive, disruptive and generally not nice to be around.


One person’s behaviour can affect the whole team.

 

Thinking about these things will help you understand yourself, what you value about the people you work with and ultimately what you need to have present within your new place of employment and the team you’re working with.


I can guarantee that when you’ve felt supported, championed and appreciated it will be because the culture of the organisation and the people was synonymous with your own.


 Ask to meet the team you’ll be working with. Have a conversation with them, ideally at a team meeting or lunch.


Also, spend time in conversation with a couple of the directors, if that’s possible, and definitely have a conversation with the person who will be your manager.


Find out what’s important to them, what their expectations are for you and work out what some of their key values and beliefs are.

 

Great leaders motivate their employees to be the best they can be, they build trust and respect with their teams.

 

Getting to know these fundamental things will ensure that you’ll thrive in your new role and you’ll have a greater awareness, not only of yourself but of the organisation and the team you’ll be working with.

 

Take the leadership role that feels right for you


Saying "YES" to a leadership role is a significant decision that can shape your career and personal growth.


By asking yourself these five questions, you ensure that you are prepared, aligned with your goals, and ready to embrace the challenges and rewards of leadership.


Remember, your journey as a leader is not just about professional success, but also about making a positive impact and paving the way for future female leaders.


So, if it feels right, then take that leap with confidence and clarity!

 

Ready to Elevate Your Leadership Journey?

 

Working through the answers to the five questions above can be difficult on your own.


So much of what I have recommended above is covered in my personalised guidance to navigate your leadership path.


You don’t have to make big career and promotion decisions on your own.


 

The tailored coaching sessions are designed to empower female leaders like you to excel in your role, overcome challenges, and achieve your career aspirations.

 

Book in a call with me today to discover how we can help you unlock your full potential and lead with confidence and impact.

 

Don't just lead, lead at the next level!


Jackie




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