Hayward: Challenges Of Being A Young Leader

March 20, 2015

[Opinion column written by BPSU President Jason Hayward]

There is no doubt that unique challenges are associated with being a young leader. However, once a person realises that they have the ability and the willingness to lead, they should make it their priority to do so. Many young persons have the ability to take on leadership roles but lack the willingness.

Everyone has their own set of reasons why they choose not to lead or press for leadership roles. I realised what was key for me was being confident in my ability and ridding myself of the fear of failure.

I believe there are added pressures placed upon young leaders which are unique from that of other demographics in leadership.  A young leader has a harder time proving or convincing persons that they have the knowledge and skill sets required to be effective.

At times, it may be extremely difficult to get the respect and buy-in from persons whom have been in organizations many years before your arrival or from persons who have literally watched you grow and develop.

I have come to the conclusion that, in order to effectively lead persons who are senior to you in age, one must earn the respect and support from those individuals. A young leader must convince individuals that they are capable of leading.

Mind frame shifts and the changes needed for a young leader to attain the buy-in from more senior individuals does not happen overnight; this is achieved through a series of defining moments.

Defining moments are occasions within a leader’s tenure when they prove their ability. Joseph Badaracco, Professor of Business Ethics at Harvard Business School, concluded that, “defining moments have three characteristics: they reveal, they test, and they shape.”

Persons observe their leaders during these moments and these moments allow individuals in an organization to assess and formulate a fair conclusion of their leader. Shining during defining moments allows a leader to build confidence and trust, motivating and inspiring those that they lead.

Young leaders remain a minority within all organizational categories and generally there is not a strong push from organizations as a whole to guide capable young persons into leadership positions. There are plenty of training and development opportunities offered to young persons but we are still told or reminded that we must wait our turn.

I was told the same during my journey, however I truly believe that I operate according to God’s will and that being a leader in the labour movement is my calling, so I was determined to push through adversity.

As young leaders although we face adversity we must not look at our elders as adversaries. The Bible tells us that the glory of young men is their strength: and the beauty of old men is their grey head.

I have realised that as a young leader I must lead boldly recognizing that I must look to my elders for council as they have valued wisdom.

I hope this inspires another young person to simply lead.

- Jason Hayward 

testimonial-divider

20 Most Recent Opinion Columns

Opinion columns reflect the views of the writer, and not those of Bernews Ltd. To submit an Opinion Column/Letter to the Editor, please email info@bernews.com. Bernews welcomes submissions, and while there are no length restrictions, all columns must be signed by the writer’s real name.

-

Share via email

Read More About

Category: All, News

Comments (4)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Extremely important verse and advice. As young leaders although we face adversity we must not look at our elders as adversaries. The Bible tells us that the glory of young men is their strength: and the beauty of old men is their grey head.
    I have realised that as a young leader I must lead boldly recognizing that I must look to my elders for council as they have valued wisdom.
    But most importantly, heed to their advice and not allowing ones ego get the better part of them.

  2. Future Alliance says:

    Dear Mr. Hayward,

    Please be encouraged, you will be fine and the aspirations of a generation of Bermudians will hold you up on those challenging days. Until then, regrettably you will have to take on more responsibility, in addition to the BPSU.

    Constituency Number 21 would be a good place to start.

    Sorry to give you more work as I know you are already very occupied with the Furrow and other pressing issues, but we need help in 21, which as a resident you should also understand.

    Appreciate you Bro Hayward

  3. Truth is killin' me... says:

    …and most importantly…DO NOT DIVIDE!

  4. how true…the way forward is the first step.I don’t know about this …we…thing we this…and we that…are we some amagamated group? only kings …presidents ,editors and people with tapeworms …have the right to say “we”… I can however offer you some goodly advice…when in doubt tell the truth.The only obstacle that in reality “is”…in your way…is youth.Now,i know your anxious,but look at what axious did to Bermuda,and the economy a few years back,that govt. was anxious,and you can see with your eyes what happened there…just easy does it,there is a lot to learn,so learn and keep your eyes open and listen,people first party second.It is better to deserve honers and not to have them than to have them and not deserve them.Patience….try jogging regularly.Oh yes…try a little to just be yourself and stck to the wicket…let me ask you something…what happens if you come out yah crease to soon…?