Inspiring Future Leaders

Ashby Jenkins

On October 16th we hosted our very first event on the topic of Inspiring Future Leaders. The event was held at OKN1 – part of New City College, which has been designed to connect promising students aspiring to secure a career in hospitality and catering.

I wanted the event to be unique, offering honest and tangible advice from some of the leaders in the sector who had been recommended to us by their team members. We wanted to focus on challenging management situations and what you should do when they (and they inevitably will) rise in your team.

We had a fantastic panel of straight talkers lined up for our guests including, Matt Wynes (Director of Fundraising, Whizz-Kidz), Reta Robinson (Director of Fundraising, St Mungo’s), Andrew Harris (Director of Income Generation, Shelter UK), and Catherine Miles (Director of Fundraising, Battersea Dogs and Cats Home).

The event was really successful and we’ve had great feedback already. A huge thank you to the amazing panel, enthusiastic guests with excellent questions and the prosecco (which always helps).

I wanted to share five key points from the panel with anyone who couldn’t make it. There are all easy to implement, practical and will inspire your team to follow you.

Top 5 points:

  1. There is nothing worse than a boss who takes all the credit.” 

Making sure you give people autonomy in their roles and praising successes is vital. If you want your team to buy-into you, never steal their glory, you should want your team to be better than you are.

2.    “Don’t become friends with your team”

Work is work, friends are friends, setting boundaries between your personal and professional life is important. It’s good for people to get on and help each other but once you are a leader you are no longer privy to gossiping with your line reports and nor should you be

3.    “You should be training your team so they are able to do your job”

Thoughtful development plans are key, train your team and give them opportunities to develop, once you’ve done all you can to give them those don’t feel bad when someone decides to leave. You should feel proud and elevated that you have helped them get that step up.

4.    “It’s your job to find out why people stay and create that culture”

When building a successful team you need to understand why people stay and why people leave, use exit interviews and encourage honesty. Find out what your team values and try to create that environment for them. 

5. “Don’t feel responsible for when you have to performance manage someone”

This is one of the toughest things for all managers, it’s emotionally draining, stressful and most good leaders will feel responsible for this situation arising. Self-reflection is always good however, remember that your team member is the one responsible for their behaviour and they can get themselves out of this with hard work.

Hopefully, you find these useful, if you have any questions or want any more detail just get in touch with us – [email protected] or 0203 006 2787