Maria and I have a collective 35 years of Third Sector leadership experience, gathering leadership insights the more we learn about the sector. At the beginning of our careers we were led by good (and bad) leaders. As our skills and experience have grown, we’ve led our own teams, celebrated wins and learnt from our mistakes.
Over the last three years we’ve been lucky enough to work with hundreds of leaders in the sector. Here are our top three leadership insights.
Those with good self care plans succeed
Quite often we work with leaders who are on the edge of burnout. Their passion for the cause is so strong that they slowly start to de-prioritise their own needs; their service users’ needs take priority. They feel increasingly exhausted, overwhelmed and unmotivated. We can probably all relate to these feelings at some point in our careers.
When leaders start to prioritise their own self care, a transformation takes place. A renewed energy emerges. We’ve seen leaders in the sector claim back their power to say ‘no’, and stress levels come down.
Positive self care plans include setting clear boundaries, delegating to others, exercising more, eating healthy foods and creating more time to spend on leisure. Self-care doesn’t mean you’ve stopped caring about your service users. It means you are better able to support them when you are at work.
The sky’s the limit with happy teams
Do you ever notice how hard everything becomes when you are unhappy and stressed? Simple tasks take three times as long, motivation levels run on empty, and creative thinking feels like a distant memory. This is the same for an unhappy team. They struggle to support one another and achieve their targets. Individuals often feel defensive, collaborative working waines, and the bigger picture gets lost.
Remotivating your team with some brave leadership – opening up some potentially difficult conversations, re-affirming your common goals and team values and resetting your team culture – creates a sea change. Happy teams are usually high-performing ones.
Don’t underestimate time to reflect
Almost every leader we’ve worked with at Animo tells us how transformational it is to have time and space for learning and reflection because it changes their mindset. Great leaders carve out time to reflect often. This gives them space to reconnect with their leadership values and lead by them, plan their projects, visualise the outcomes, and acknowledge their achievements as they grow. This all leads to greater self-awareness that can be built upon year after year.
Developing confident and courageous leaders is at the heart of what Animo does. Our aim is to support teams to lead from their values, develop equity, build trust, and be brave. Our programmes are built on these key principles.
If you would like support to develop your leadership confidence, or reset your team culture, or want some space to reflect we’d love to hear from you.
Click this link to book a discovery call. No obligation – just a chance for us to find out more about what you need and for you to meet us and see if we could be the right fit.
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