Every time I talk to leaders, we ultimately have a conversation about potential.
Most of us know that one employee or group that has all the potential in the world but is just not living up to expectations. You have seen these people do great things and you know the hidden potential is in them, but for some reason, they can’t break out of their own shell.
There are many reasons why someone might not be living up to their potential. While it is not always the fault of the leader themselves for the shortcomings of this individual or group, there is a ton that you can do to help them get out of their own way and finally start accomplishing what you know that they are capable of.
Here’s how to unlock the hidden potential in your team
Tip #1 – Help them envision where they want to be.
Many CEOs and other leaders are huge advocates of making very structured goals and envisioning the process of how they are going to get there. This process of manifestation is crucial to help keep a clear mind on an objective and drive towards it. IF you have a team member that is struggling with this, they might need a little coaching. This process doesn’t come naturally to everyone and is not a practice that professionals, especially young professionals, are taught how to do.
Sit down with them and help them map this process and match it to their goals. Have that honest conversation of where they want to be in 1 year, 3 years, and 5 years and talk about the exact steps they will need to take to reach those milestones. That level of transparency will show that you have confidence that they can accomplish it and a set list of tasks will help them always know where they stand to their potential.
Tip #2 – You have to build them up.
In what I have seen throughout my career, self-confidence is what holds most people back from hitting their full potential. This is something that is built up over a long period of time and can be a difficult thing to crack for some people as self-doubt is an incredibly powerful force.
Now, do you have to go over the top and give high-fives for every little thing someone does? Of course not. But learning the motivating factors of an individual and using them to help them really see what they can do is not a bad thing.
Another way to accomplish this is to show your confidence in someone by giving them opportunities that may be above their current position or job responsibilities. Giving someone a project with a lot more responsibility is a good way to show that you have confidence in them to do the job and might end up being the thing that makes things “click”.
Tip #3 – Tell them about their potential, and make comparisons to yourself.
This is pretty simple. Have you told them about their potential? Do they know all the things that we can accomplish? Many times, they won’t.
One thing that makes this even more impactful is to draw comparisons to you and your own career. Giving these comparisons makes it much easier for someone to know that you know what they are going through and have the best way to get out of that funk. This, coupled with the acknowledgment that they have the potential to great things, could be the difference maker in their performance and their career overall.
Everyone seems to have that one person that they know can accomplish incredible things if they only realized that they could. Hopefully, this can be the key that unlocks their potential and makes this person or team do incredible things!