How to Transform Mid-Team

The best time to transform to a radically new leadership style is when you start fresh with a new team. But that’s not always practical or feasible.

You’ve been reading blogs, books, and maybe attended a course or got some 360 feedback, but your team doesn’t know all of that. If you transform your style now, what will they think? If you suddenly start asking questions instead of tellingrecognizing their wins, or take a sudden interest in their personal life, will they trust you?

If the transformation is dramatic, your teams may be shocked at best and at least skeptical. They may even distrust your motives.

Working on becoming a better leader is always worth it.

So, how can you ensure your team will take you seriously? Can you transform with credibility?

4 Ways To Transform in Trust 

  1. Explain why
    Tell them you are working on your leadership. Be a role model for taking development seriously. Explain why you are making this change.
  2. Be specific
    Tell them specifically what you are working to change, and what they should expect to see.
  3. Share your feelings
    Share a bit about what excites and scares you.
  4. Ask for help
    Ask for feedback about how you are doing along the way. If there is a specific behavior you are working on, ask them to help you recognize that. Consider developing a signal or other safe and easy way for them to let you know.
  5. Have you ever transformed your leadership midstream? How did you make the transition go smoothly?

    What if you need the team to change too (come back on Monday as the discussion continues).

Posted in Authenticity & Transparency and tagged , , , , .

Karin Hurt

Karin Hurt, is CEO of Let’s Grow Leaders and a former Verizon Wireless executive. Karin was named on Inc.’s list of 100 Great Leadership Speakers for Your Next Conference, the American Management Association List of 50 Leaders to Watch, and as a Trust Across America Top Thought Leader in Trust. She’s the award-winning author of two books, Winning Well: A Manager’s Guide to Getting Results— Without Losing Your Soul, and Overcoming an Imperfect Boss. She’s regularly featured in business publications including Fast Company, Entrepreneur, and Inc.


  1. The advice to “be specific” is huge. It’s all to easy to remain aloof among vague references and platitudes. It takes a lot of work to boil things down to specifics, but it’s worth the effort

  2. Pingback: How To Reset Your Team's Expectations

  3. Karin,

    This is such a great topic! Whenever I talk with leaders who’ve had a “transformative moment” and wish to change the way they show up at work – this is exactly what I warn them about. Team members will be very skeptical (to say the least!) if a “new” person all of a sudden shows up.

    • Jennifer, Thanks so much for joining in the conversation. I like the thought of “transformational moment.” That’s a great way to think about it… it sometimes takes more than a minute for others to catch up with us.

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