It may seem strange to stay in touch with team members after you’ve left your position or ended a career, but you should.
Photo by Yasmina H on Unsplash
Extraordinary leaders don't wait to lead, they constantly nurture talented people, spot opportunities for them to do meaningful work, and maintain connections with other skilled professionals in their network.
When you find yourself on the other side, it’s tempting to only think about the future and forget everything about your departure. It might even be painful to stop and reflect on whom you left behind.
As you recover, keep loose ties with the people you hired, because you once trusted them to be on your team.
Your feelings may be hurt, but remember you hired amazing people who are talented, skilled professionals. You’ve nourished and shaped their careers. Some of them care about you deeply, just as you care for them.
When you leave a company, your old team still thinks of you as their leader, at least until your replacement is hired. In that vacuum, you have a chance to heal old wounds and cultivate new relationships with the very people who supported you in your old role.
Here are some simple ways you can recover from your departure while maintaining relationships with your old team members.
Ask how they are, let them know you are thinking of them, and offer your support. This may seem simple, but reaching out to someone “just because” is one of the best ways to foster a relationship.
Keep loose ties by sharing an article or offering to connect them to someone who would be a great contact. Your continued leadership and encouragement will be appreciated.
Take time to thank your old teammates for their efforts and share your appreciation. They will be flattered and intrigued to hear from you. For example, you might say, “It’s rare to find someone as creative and skilled at both concepts and execution like you. Thank you for all your hard work.” Or even, “Thank you for supporting me and my team, no matter what. I couldn't have asked for a better (job title) to support me/the team/the company.”
Offer your public endorsement of their skills by agreeing to supply a job reference or review on LinkedIn. They may welcome the chance to endorse you, too!
Taking action to think about other people, and not yourself, will help you feel better. These small acts of connection will aid to build and maintain your relationships for years to come.
Extraordinary leaders don't “do networking.” They build and maintain rapport from the heart, because that is where they carry the people in their teams. Make it a habit to connect with three people every day to quickly shift your feelings of loss into the joy of serving others.
Fostering connections is one of the ways I help my clients grow their influence as they step into their next level of leadership. I coach leaders through career change, helping them activate leadership skills to manifest what they truly want and bring their vision into reality.
In my private 1:1 coaching program, we work together in 90-day sprints to grow your influence, surround yourself with people who align with your truth, reclaim your natural powers, and lead from your greatest strengths.
Are you going through a career change or stepping into a new level of leadership?