Let me ask you this, how often do you hear the concept of “Leaders as Lifters”?

What comes to mind for you when you read that phrase: Leaders are lifters?

Leaders are Lifters

“Leaders are Lifters” is a concept that encapsulate the idea that leaders, especially middle managers like you, must not only focus on your personal success but also on elevating the potential and performance of your team. It’s a noble and necessary challenge, but one that can feel daunting at times, would you agree?

Having been able to work with more than 10,000 middle managers throughout my career, I understand the intricacies and difficulties of your role. You have your own career aspirations and goals and you want to excel in your position. Yet, you’re also responsible for nurturing the growth and development of your team member. It’s a delicate balance, but I’ve come to realise that this challenge brings with it some incredible opportunities for you to thrive as a leader.

Cultivate a Coaching Mindset

I’d like to explore is the idea of cultivating a coaching mindset. Instead of just directing your team, you can embrace the role of a coach. This shift in perspective allows you to guide your team members in unlocking their full potential. Here’s how you can do it:

Active Listening: One of the most powerful tools in your coaching toolbox is active listening. When you listen attentively to your team members’ concerns, ideas and goals, you create a supportive environment where they feel heard and valued. Be a better listener.

Feedback and Guidance: Providing constructive feedback and actionable guidance is essential. It helps your team members understand their strengths and areas for improvement. By offering thoughtful insights, you become a valuable mentor. Improve, engage and drive performance through your feedback – learn more here.

Empowering Decision-Making: Encourage your team members to make decisions independently, while standing by to offer support when needed, promotes their confidence and accountability. It’s about giving them the autonomy to flourish.

Recognising Achievements: Acknowledging and celebrating your team members’ accomplishments reinforces their motivation and commitment. It’s important to let them know that their hard work doesn’t go unnoticed.

By adopting this coaching mindset, you’re not just enhancing team performance; you’re also becoming a more effective leader yourself. You’re nurturing a culture of growth and development, which benefits everyone involved.

Foster a Culture of Growth

The second opportunity in your journey as a “Leaders as Lifters” is fostering a culture of growth within your team and organisation. Here’s how you can do it:

Setting Clear Expectations: Communicating clear performance expectations and growth opportunities to your team members ensures alignment with organisational objectives. When they know what’s expected, they can strive to meet and exceed those expectations.

Providing Learning Resources: Identifying and offering relevant learning resources, such as The Confidence Program™  and skill-building workshops, empowers your team members to expand their knowledge and skills. It’s an investment in their future and the future of your organisation.

Encouraging Innovation: Creating an environment that encourages innovation and experimentation allows your team members to explore new ideas and approaches. It’s about fostering a sense of curiosity and creativity.

Rewarding Development: Recognising and rewarding your team members who actively engage in personal and professional development reinforces the importance of growth. It shows that you value their commitment to improvement.

By prioritising and facilitating a culture of growth, you’re not only elevating your team but also contributing to the overall success and longevity of your organisations. It’s about creating an environment where everyone can thrive.


While the challenge of balancing your personal aspirations with team development in the context of “Leaders as Lifters” may seem complex, I’ve come to believe that it offers you some remarkable opportunities. By embracing a coaching mindset and fostering a culture of growth, you can excel as both an individual leader and a catalyst for your team’s success. Ultimately, this drives positive outcomes not only for your team but for your organisations as a whole.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic. Share your insights with me and let’s continue to learn and grow together.