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Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.Albert Einstein

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From manager to leader

From manager to leader

High-performing managers are sometimes surprised when they don’t get a promotion or are evaluated below their expectations. Indeed, even in operational positions, managers must demonstrate leadership qualities such as strategic perspective, the ability to influence others and to lead change.


A plant manager known for his excellent results was surprised to be systematically overlooked for strategic positions, until the results of his 360° assessment opened his eyes. His subordinates complained of his tendency to micro-manage, his manager was surprised that the two of them worked so little together, and his peers criticized his defensiveness toward them. These negative evaluations ended up being very useful to him, because they made him aware of major flaws in his leadership posture. Although he was in an operational role, he was still expected to also demonstrate leadership qualities. These qualities certainly weren’t part of his current job description. However, to be perceived as someone capable of taking on greater responsibilities, he first needed to show that he could see the big picture, manage change and make a value-added contribution to his peers and superiors.

You can’t position yourself as a leader just by doing your job well. And it isn’t simply a matter of image or public relations within the organization. The ability to put things into perspective or influence complex sets of players can’t be improvised. You must develop it before you are placed in a leadership position. But how can you do this when attaining your operational objectives already absorbs all your available energy?

- Rethink the way you add value in order to give yourself the means to allocate more time to developing your leadership capabilities.

- Expand your range of behaviors to prepare to manage a broader range of situations than those you encounter in your current position.

- Build your network to expand your horizons and reinforce your capacity for action.

Synopsis n.241a


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