How to Foster Leadership Within Your Team

in Management by Emily Snell

How to Foster Leadership Within Your Team

How to Foster Leadership Within Your Team

YEC (Young Entrepreneur Council) surveyed some folks about how they develop leaders in their organization. Here are their answers:

How do you develop leaders within your organization? 

1. Have Leadership Development Programs

In order to effectively develop leaders within our organization, we’ve implemented a leadership development program that makes employees feel more connected to the business. Through this program, we state very clearly what our vision and company goals are upfront. From there, once those two steps are understood, we are able to cultivate a program that turns employees into established leaders.

Anthony Pezzotti,

2. Increase the Pressure and Responsibilities

After being in a high-pressure situation for long enough, they will begin to notice patterns and how your organization moves forward from a speed hump. If you can trust your team enough to allow them to make mistakes, what you’ll get in turn is better than loyalty. Your team will begin to trust their own instincts, and they’ll make autonomous decisions (sometimes even better than your own).

Cody McLain, SupportNinja

3. Educate and Empower

In growing a business from the ground up, you need to recruit employees that have the potential to be partners one day. Give them the tools (seminars, ebooks, reading material, etc.) to learn the skills necessary to be a leader, and then empower them to make decisions on their own. They’ll make mistakes, but you’ll always be there to help them grow into the leaders you want them to become.

Anshey Bhatia, Verbal+Visual

4. Guide Instead of Manage

True future leaders within your organization don’t need to be managed, they need the proper framework, resources and support so they can be easily guided and developed. One of the best ways to do this is by providing them access and exposure to those who are already in leadership positions, and to serve as a mentor and role model for the rockstars on your team.

Lindsay Mullen, Prosper Strategies

5. Challenge Them

It is important to find smart people who know how to get things done, but it is also essential that you assign them tasks they don’t know how to do, but can figure out. Present them with a challenge and then let them come up with a solution. Even if they struggle, having to push themselves will grow and develop their skills.

Matthew Weinberg, Vector Media Group

6. Give Them More Responsibility

Giving employees more responsibility is a great way to develop a leader and gauge whether they will be able to handle it. Don’t always give them the tools they need; let them challenge themselves to see what they can do. The true leaders always come out on top.

Leila Lewis, Be Inspired PR

7. Invest in Them

To develop leaders and ensure your next generation of leadership isn’t poached by your competitors, you need to invest in them. From slightly increased wages to corporate training and even startup funds, building and hanging onto your budding leaders requires investment. There’s no sense in spending the time and money to train a new leader just to have them poached by a competitor’s better offer.

Brandon Stapper, 858 Graphics

8. Become a Mentor

Find your key proteges and become a mentor to your potential leaders. You’ll find that your business is probably filled to the brim with future company leaders, but oftentimes these individuals don’t understand the potential of their contributions without a bit of assistance. Allow them to see, and achieve, their own potential by empowering them and giving them the confidence they need to succeed.

Blair Thomas, First American Merchant

9. Make Them Experience Your Life

I started as a bookworm in law school. Starting a company abruptly taught me volumes about being a leader. Like most startups, my employees are often young and relatively inexperienced. I make a point of working one-on-one with every new hire, and giving them projects that I once worked on. It’s tough, but if they succeed I know I can trust them to take on additional roles in leadership.

Joel Butterly, InGenius Prep

About the Author

Emily Snell

Emily is a contributing marketing author at where she regularly consults on content strategy and overall topic focus. Emily has spent the last 12 years helping hyper growth startups and well-known brands create content that positions products and services as the solution to a customer's problem.

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