How do you lead? How do you WANT to lead?

follow the lead

Um…guys? I think you’re supposed to be following me.

I have recently received a promotion at work which I’m so stoked about. As the Director of Engagement, my job is to work with a team to make sure our clients are happy and successful. Weeeeeeeeee! And now the fun begins…

I wrote up my ideas for this role and wrote  my job description collaboratively with my CEO. (How cool is that?!)  I am in love with this role. I am drowning in it as well. 🙂

I had such a heavy hand in creating this job and yet, I was caught completely unaware when this job created more work than I could possibly achieve in a day or week or maybe ever. How silly is that?!

I should’ve been more prepared for this since it was my vision, but instead, I’m over here wondering if I can stress eat myself to success… Luckily, I have an amazing boss, a fantastic-kick-ass team and a ton of support. (Thanks for making dinner Colbster!) 

As I begin to gear up on building a new department and leading a new team, I’ve got a lot of self doubt building up over what kind of leader I’ll be. It’s no longer just me, pushing for what I think the right things are. It’s now me deciding the direction and then pushing/pulling/encouraging a team along.

Hubspot (one of my daily internet addictions, right behind ModCloth) recently asked What Type of Leader Are You? And it got me thinking… how do I lead and how do I want to lead?

I AM: 

  • Bossy and loud
  • Overly empathetic but not necessarily sympathetic
  • Willing to make hard decisions
  • Determined to succeed


  • Be a good listener
  • Hold people accountable fairly
  • Understand the challenges so I can help overcome them
  • Have a good time

In reviewing the HubSpot post, I really want to be the kind of leader that people want to follow. Not the type of leader that people have to follow.

In the coming weeks, months, periods of time in the future, I’m going to focus on being the type of leader that says:

Come with me.

People come first.

What do you think?

Let’s try this.

I don’t know that it will change who I am. I am and always have been bossy and willing to speak my mind. But I also care about what I’m doing. I care about my team. I care that they succeed more than me succeeding (although sometimes I have to remind myself of that.)

Being a leader is scary when you’re also a boss because it’s no longer someone else’s decision. I’m accountable for my own success. I’m accountable for my team’s success.

What are your favorite traits in a boss? What kind of leader do you prefer? Any tips or comments to offer?

Photo credit: Flickr user Vinoth Chandar.

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