Leaderly Quote: You don’t have to lead the team to do amazing things

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Want to make a bigger difference at work? You don’t have to wait to be promoted into a leadership role. It is possible to make great things happen even though you lack the leverage of a large team reporting to you.

“What are some ways to be more strategic when there’s not a large team to take on necessary tasks?” asked Rebecca, a participant in my recent webinar on transitioning from tactician to strategist.

I put that question to my guest speaker, Dona Munsch, Vice President of Cloud Operations with NetApp. In her response, Munsch spoke directly to a misconception implicit in the question. “You don’t have to lead the team to do amazing things,” says Munsch.

It is possible to lead change and make a large impact while in an individual contributor role, but it takes setting aside a “worker bee” mentality, to think like a strategist and influencer.

Munsch shared three steps for getting started:

1. Find a meaningful problem
2. Enlist broad-based support to define and address it.
2. Utilize a problem-solving methodology, like DMAIC.
3. Start small, go fast, grow as you go.

Jo Miller

Jo is Founding Editor of Be Leaderly, CEO of Women’s Leadership Coaching, Inc., and creator of the Women’s Leadership Coaching® system, a roadmap for women who want to break into leadership. She has traveled in Europe, North America, Asia Pacific, and the Middle East to deliver keynotes and workshops, and counts being the only Aussie women’s leadership coach in Iowa among her unique “koalafications.” Learn more about Jo’s services at womensleadershipcoaching.com and follow @jo_miller on Twitter.

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