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When Nirvana disbanded after the loss of Kurt Cobain in 1994, Dave Grohl decided to turn up his commitment to music. He founded The Foo Fighters as a one-man project and soon added band members to create the group we know and love today.  Not every frontman starts out on the mic. Sometimes, they are guitarists, bassists, or in the case of Dave Grohl… drummers. Likewise, not every leader starts out in management. Sometimes, their managers see something special, and with the right cultivation, a leader is born.  Some organizations feel that leadership is better brought in from outside. That’s not true! Promoting leaders from within your organization has several benefits. First, it fosters loyalty among your employees. If they know they may be promoted, they will work harder and seek out opportunities for increased training and responsibility. According to a survey of 1,000 full-time workers from Joblist, 81% of managers promoted internally were more likely to report feeling supported by their teams. 77% found it easier to lead, and 85% felt like they had a highly productive team.  This begs the question: how do you cultivate emerging leaders? Steps to Cultivating Emerging Leaders Wouldn’t it be nice to “hire” a manager who already knows the company’s culture and systems and has a good rapport with the employees? Promoting from within allows you to skip much of the onboarding and fills the position with someone you already know, like, and trust.  The following steps will help you identify and develop existing talent, turning them into leaders you can be proud of. Identify Potential – What are the qualities you look for in a leader? Confidence? Accountability? Vision? Delegation? Make a “wish list” of everything you’d like to see in a future leader, and then watch for it among your team members. Also, make sure your culture fosters the qualities you are looking for. If, for example, you want an innovative leader, but your culture doesn’t allow for employee input or punishes “failure,” your employees won’t feel comfortable showcasing that quality.  Dave Grohl once said, “It was that famous joke: What’s the last thing the drummer said before he got kicked out of the band? ‘Hey, I wrote a song.’” Provide Opportunities— Don’t shy away from encouraging growth. When you’ve got potential future leaders in your midst, give them opportunities to showcase their skills. Offer them new projects and responsibilities where they can showcase their skills and develop them further. Be careful not to add these on top of their existing responsibilities. You are looking for leadership traits, not trying to burn out your employees so they quit.  Offer Training—Once you’ve identified potential, provide training, mentorship, and coaching. Focus on discovering their unique skills and work to strengthen them. If your company doesn’t have an established leadership training program, look to outside sources for education.  Build Confidence – As you create opportunities for growth, provide supportive feedback that tells them what they rocked and what they need to work on. Make sure to include the positive so they feel good about their accomplishments and are inspired to continue.  Celebrate Successes—When one employee is promoted, it boosts the confidence of other employees with leadership aspirations. Celebrations and recognitions should be done privately with the new leader, who needs continuous encouragement, and publicly so the team can celebrate together and see themselves moving up the ranks in the future.  Keep your eyes open. You will want to have a constant pipeline of talent in development, ready to step into leadership positions. This will not only give you quality applicants the next time a position opens but will also raise the quality of your employee’s performance in their existing roles.  Conclusion If your band is looking for a new lead singer, look no further than your bandmates. There may be raw talent just waiting for you to mold it. Turn up your leadership training, and you’ll turn up your business! For more tips on leadership, teamwork, and becoming a rockstar, visit https://marvellessmark.com.

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