Erin Pressley, the vice president of publishing for NACS: The Association for Convenience and Fuel Retailing, believes in being heard and investing in teams.
Surround yourself with experts. If you invest time up front, make the right hires, and onboard them effectively, then you won’t run into many problems leading that team. Being a good leader does not mean I know how to do everything, but it does mean I should be skilled in hiring others who can be expert at what they do. Being a leader means that I can build a solid team, guide them in the right strategic direction, and give them the responsibility and freedom to create and execute their best work.
Realize culture is crucial. Don’t ever trivialize the importance of workplace culture. Think of it as the grease for the wheels of a profitable, well-run business machine. For it to work, good culture must come from the top down, and be clearly articulated throughout the organization. Just saying you want good culture is not enough. Be an active participant in defining, advocating for, and modeling your organization’s values and ethics, and hold your team accountable for following through.
Speak up and be counted. For many female leaders, this does not come naturally, but speaking up is important for personal development, and it’s part of your job as a leader. So, ladies, drop your fear of being “found out,” of being wrong, of being ridiculed, and don’t wait to weigh in. If you don’t take up air time, people will assume you have nothing to say.