Ask any notable leader about how they got to where they are today and they’re bound to say “practice”. As the saying goes, leaders are made, not born; if you want to forge your path towards great leadership, you have to be willing to put in the hard work.
Strata managers are expected to lead a team and direct their clients, employees and associate contractors in the direction of a job well done. Whether you’re just starting out in your career or have already earned your strata manager stripes, there are multiple ways you can strengthen your leadership skills on a daily basis.
1. Find a mentor
Having access to someone who knows the ropes can be a valuable resource. If you’ve already got a trusted advisor, good for you. If you’re going at it alone, reach out to an individual who emanates the kind of leadership skills you aspire to demonstrate. It doesn’t matter whether they’re in the strata industry or not: good mentors are people who can provide objective guidance and feedback that’s based on real-life experience.
2. Build up a library of digital resources that you can dip into as you see fit
Feed curation tool Feedly is a free and easy way to access your favourite content via one intuitive dashboard. Save must-reads for later and curate content into categories as you see fit. If you’re short on time to read or prefer your content in audible format, tap into the world of podcasts on your commute or as you sweat it out on the treadmill. Listen to leadership gurus like James Altucher, Arianna Huffington, Tim Ferris and more talk about all things leadership via iTunes or Android-compatible apps like Stitcher or Podcast Addict.
3. Talk to the duck
No, we’re not crazy. ‘Rubber duck debugging’ is a problem solving technique used by coders and developers who place a rubber duck on their desks and literally discuss a problem with their inanimate audience, instead of sounding off to a co-worker. ‘Talking to the duck’ may be unconventional, but the theory behind it is sound. Often times, the solution to a challenge is within reach, but to find it, you need to verbalise the issue. By explaining a process, concept or roadblock to someone—in this case, a rubber duck—you’re automatically forced to grasp the idea yourself.
4. Identify your strengths and weaknesses
All great leaders are self aware. They’re cognisant of their strengths and mindful of their weaknesses. Instead of aiming to be a great all-round leader immediately, focus on the things you’re good at—wooing potential clients or motivating employees—and delegate or work with a fellow strata manager on the elements you struggle with. Great leaders aren’t afraid to ask for help, and by admitting your weaknesses, you’re demonstrating that you’re fallible to human error but—and this is the important bit—are willing to grow.
5. Aim to influence, not dictate
No one wants to work for a dictator. As history has shown time and again, a ‘my way or the highway’ stance only disempowers and demotivates. Patiently demonstrating the qualities you value in others by embracing them yourself may take time and effort, but the dividends are long lasting and that much greater.
6. Conduct a self-rendered performance review
Keeping track of your progress—as you would any other goal—is the difference between strata managers who consistently better their leadership skills, and those who stagnate. Objectivity is key here: it may help to compile a rough outline of the areas you performed well in, the tasks you struggled with, and the qualities or skills you need to improve upon.
If you're looking to offer the best strata management services and drive constant improvements in your operations, the Strata Manager’s Best Practice Guide to Painted Properties tells you everything to know about managing your painted strata properties for ultimate success.
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