As an IT leader, you need to develop several skills to be able to lead successfully in the real world. Some of these come naturally as personality traits and some of them are learned by experience.
If you are an IT leader or are aspiring to be one, learn why the following traits may impair you from becoming successful.
1. Lack of Communication Skills
This is one of the most important skill for anyone to be successful. You need to be able to communicate in the way that is understood by others so that they can appreciate your skill, your knowledge and what you can bring to the table. In today’s global economy, especially if you are in IT, you need to learn to work with people across the globe. Learn how to communicate effectively with people from different cultural and environmental backgrounds, different countries and different time zones.
Read this to learn how to adapt yourself and achieve a “global mind set” and be able to communicate with anyone in this global era.
2. Being Rigid.
If you are already in IT, you may know the nature of IT projects and how quickly and drastically they change. One of the reasons we are employing the Agile methodologies to software development is due to the fact that the time spent on planning the work to be done 6 months from now may become irrelevant by those 6 months. If you are a person who do not like to change your plans and are not able to be flexible with the changing requirements, needs of your customers, then you may be hurting yourself more than you know.
Most people who are very organized also do not like to change the way they do things. In IT, you need to be well organized and also quite flexible to meet the changing needs and demands of the end users.
3. You Panic Easily
If you fear the unforeseen issues and lose your cool under pressure, then think again before taking up a leadership role in IT. All IT projects/programs go through a stressful phase or crisis at some point or the other. Be it be scope creep, lack of resources, tight timelines, budget, or other dependencies, you need to train yourself to handle such situations and not succumb to the pressure. Under pressure, you cannot think straight and come up with solutions to such problems. Also prepare your team so that they can handle unforeseen situations with grace. This surely is one of those skills that comes with practice, patience and experience. The more experienced you are the more skillful you get at handle crisis and risks.
4. Lack of Compassion
As a leader in IT, you are the bridge between your internal team and the external team or your customers. You need to handle the expectations of your customers and the needs and frustrations of your team members. You need to understand the challenges of all the teams that you work with and show compassion so that they feel appreciated. Being compassionate is the first step to building strong relationships in the work place. It helps you inspire and motivate your team to get greater results.
5. Lack of Technical Knowledge
Having the essential technical knowledge is an asset that can be valuable and come handy at several situations for anyone in IT management. As an IT leader, having the necessary technical knowledge gives you an edge to talk with your team and also with your customers. Your team will respect you if you know what you are doing. You will gain your customers respect when you can tell them if what they are asking is doable or not – with your technical expertise.
All of the above skills will help you achieve the following results.
- Be able to critically think. recognize and solve problems fast
- Be able to negotiate where needed.
- Understand the big picture and apply your expertise
- Inspire, motivate, and take charge and lead.
What other hurdles should one overcome to Lead IT with Confidence? Any other skills you think are essential to being a good IT leader? Please leave a Comment.