How to make the transition from manager to leader


There seems to be a big misunderstanding nowadays between the difference of being a great manager and being a great leader. Being a great leader means people want to follow you and support your vision and goals, but being a manager doesn’t necessarily mean you are a great leader. Instead, you need to develop certain traits and skills that will earn you the title of leader. In turn, these skills can help you push your career in directions you would never imagine possible. So here are three tips on how to go from manager to leader.

1. Stop micromanaging

In general, being a manager means you are in charge of a number of people and projects and it is your job to make sure you are all doing your part in completing that mission. As the manager, it’s your duty to be involved in all steps and making sure everything goes well. But to make the transition towards leader you need to stop micromanaging and instead learn to empower those in your team. Essentially, you are teaching those below you the vital steps it takes to progress towards management, whilst at the same time you free up more of your time for other important tasks.

2. Start thinking long-term

Being a leader means you are the one with the vision and the end goal in mind that the company needs to work towards. Managers, on the other hand, are more concerned with short-term day-to-day tasks that keep the company on track with current projects. So, to better start developing your leadership capabilities, take a step back now and again and think strategically about whether what your team are doing is truly in the best interests of the company. Use that long-term thinking to start identifying weaknesses in the current system and looking for big opportunities on the horizon. Then share these ideas with those above you in the organisation and demonstrate your potential.

3. Develop your team

As mentioned earlier, by delegating effectively you can free up vital time that you can then spend on other objectives. But effective delegation has another vital benefit that will help you become a better leader, which is to help develop your team members as well as yourself. Doing this means, instead of telling everyone what to do, you need to engage in real conversations to understand everyone’s strengths and weaknesses. Then find out what it is they are actually looking to achieve from working with you. Finally, create a plan to help every individual to grow their skill sets and abilities in the direction they want. In turn, your team will come to respect and reward you for your support and belief in them and the company as a whole will flourish with more effective and more motivated employees.

If you have noticed these weaknesses in yourself then it’s time to act and make the change. Becoming a better leader will lead to distinct changes in how you approach challenges and how you engage in team projects. In turn, your own company will start to see this growth in leadership potential and decide to move you up. Alternatively, it provides the perfect opportunity to seek new routes for your career and move onto other companies. If you are in the finance industry and think you have what it takes to make a step forward in your career, then get in contact today. BTG Recruitment are experts in finance and accountancy recruitment and are always looking for new talented individuals to work with and fulfil their potential.

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