Discover your 5 Steps to Overcome Resistance as a Team Leader – Excel | Succeed with Ease

Remember the excitement you felt when you gained your promotion.

Has your Confidence started to waver when you meet resistance from your team members? It is not as easy as you thought it would be?

You thought it would be a great challenge, now you just want to close your door and be left alone!

Do you remember the moment when you were told that you had been successful in taking up your new role as a team leader? Perhaps you were promoted externally or maybe internally. I am sure you would have had a sense of achievement knowing that you now have a new  opportunity to lead your team members.

After all you have the right skills, knowledge and reputation to do the role effectively.  Right!  Now you may be experiencing some resistance from your team members.  Almost feeling like you are being blindsided. This may show up in many different forms and you are starting to challenge your own capabilities. Can I really handle this now; questioning yourself.!

It could be that your team members have been part of the organisation or business for a long time and resent an external person coming in and  leading them. They may have a belief that they deserve the role over you simply because they have been there longer. You know it is their right to be promoted. Not necessary based on their skill levels or leadership qualities.

 Or perhaps your team members are older than you. Being a completely different generation, and they don’t like being guided or lead by a younger person. After all what do you know!

The other issue could be the need to form a different type of relationship with your recent peers, having been promoted internally. Will they still like me; after all we were such good friends? How do I do the transition?

Taking ownership of your new role 


 Firstly,  stop and remember that you didn’t promote yourself into this role; you were chosen by going through a interviewing process for the position.

This was based on your current skill sets, experience, attitude, work ethic and your potential. Someone else saw all these qualities within you, now it is your role to prove them right.

You have been called into a new chapter of your life and let’s take complete ownership of the role. Stop rejecting yourself as not being good enough, to start believing in your own abilities and step up into your role. You can do this, simply believe that you can grow into your role and be open to the new challenges that will occur.

Every job you do, from the simplest of management tasks to leading and guiding the most complex of projects, is a direct reflection on you as a professional. In a world where your economic security is a function of your skills, knowledge, and reputation, it is essential for you to take ownership of your work and ensure that it reflects positively on you as a professional.

Focus on what type of leader you want to become. An easy way to do this is simply think of a role model that inspires you and take a moment to reflect on what do they do, or believe in, that does inspire you.  It is okay to start with these until you shape your own style and identity as a new leader.

I remember a time when I worked with my first coach and I was a new business leader. I was so excited to step into leadership that I said to him that I wanted to be the best leader out there. He paused and said to me “Lee try to start with just becoming a leader first, and with experience you will continually improve.” I got it, you need to take one step at a time and not compare yourself with others, simply keep moving forward always refining your skills and learning from taking risks.

Don’t play safe and become a push over from others. Become a person who gets excited with challenges. Take complete ownership of your role. Yes it is yours, now completely commit to it.

Build your Confidence


There is no lack of people out there – whether family members, workplace associates, or friends– who seem intent on making your life miserable. The truth is that many people operate with bad behaviour.

The reasons for this are many, but include:

  • Lack of self-esteem or confidence in themselves
  • Unhappiness with themselves or their lives
  • Past trauma and holding onto the past
  • Difficult situations such as financial duress, job loss, health issues etc.
  • Jealousy and envy of your success – Tall Poppy Syndrome
  • Difficulty communicating
  • Wanting results without putting in the work

 You will be a target and I remember when I first started to build my communities online. Once I started to gain momentum and people were starting to notice me, the keyboard warriors came out to play.

These warriors are cowards that hide behind their keyboards with the intention of putting others down. This is something that I want you to remember. We cannot control others; however, we have the ability to respond to these situations in a way that fits into our value systems.

I was shocked at first, then I just decided not to respond to these people. I focused on what I wanted to achieve, which was building my community. Once I decided not to focus on them, they disappeared.

Now I know that when you are leading a team that you still must work with them. This is where having a good toolbox of tricks and self-awareness will help you.


Remember this

When someone exhibits destructive, mean or otherwise uncaring behavior, they are usually acting out from something going on with them, not with you. They may say it is about you – “Oh, you don’t know enough WHY did you get the job!” – but the reality is that people who manifest these negative behaviors are showing an outward display of inward pain.

However, where does that pain get inflicted? On you! It’s hard when someone is resisting you and putting up barriers. Just remember not to give your power away. Remember take ownership of your role, you have earned this.  You can always buy a voodoo doll and stick pins in it each time you leave them.

Your attempts to say “just the right thing” won’t shift their unhappiness with themselves (unless perhaps you are a trained therapist). So the cycle continues. They act badly, you react and feel badly, and nothing changes.

Next time you encounter someone’s bad behaviour, consider taking back your power. Realize that you can own your reactions and actions and can shift the dynamic and lessen the sting inflicted by the negative person. It takes work and it isn’t easy. 

 Look at ways to continue your own professional development and some new tools to put into your toolbox.

Continuous training is important, once you have the knowledge then you need to have the courage to push back and use the knowledge. I would always recommend assertiveness and conflict management training and development. Having a mentor is also a great way to have professional support that will help you to remember how brilliant you are.

Understanding the Importance of Leadership and Management


Let’s start with understanding the importance of focusing on Leadership with Management. Good team leaders need to ensure both leadership and management approaches are being utilized at the right time. One without the  other will lead to poor results for any team and organisation.

Leadership is the timeless practice of guiding others in pursuit of a goal, destination or desired outcome. At the most fundamental level, a leader is someone who motivates, inspires and guides others toward pre-established goals.

Good Leaders have followers.

A clear, strong vision serves as a rallying point for employees. It helps people and teams prioritize investments and improvements. It gives everyone in an organization something to strive for in their daily pursuits.

Leaders motivate team members through goal establishment, coaching, feedback and by providing ongoing developmental support. Although money is a component of why everyone works, other intangible factors like rewarding work and the presence of opportunities for professional development are powerful motivators, always assuming that compensation is fair. Effective leaders are constantly on the lookout for ways to tap into the drive and passion of their employees.


Management is the ability to execute the vision of the company or business. Achieving team goals can be simply administering and making sure the day-to-day things are happening as they should. Management is ensuring that all processes and standards are being followed, whilst establishing roles and ensuring that rules and boundaries are in place.

First, management establishes a plan. This plan becomes the road map for what work is going to be done. Second, management allocates resources to implement the plan. Third, management measures the results to see how the product compares with what was originally envisioned. Most management failings can be attributed to insufficient effort occurring in one of these three areas.

Skills Required

Leadership vs Management


  • Enables trust within their team
  • Provide clarity for direction
  • Take responsibility for their team members and their team's results
  • Guide a continuous strategy refinement process
  • Cultivate and motivate high individual and team performance
  • Support experimentation and learning
  • Develop talent
  • Guide decision-making
  • Establish and ensure accountability
  • Develop and support core values
  • Communicate with transparency


  • Being Able to Execute a Vision: take a strategic vision and break it down into a road map to be followed by the team
  • Ability to Direct: day-to-day work efforts, review resources needed and anticipate needs along the way
  • Process Management: establish work rules, processes, standards and operating procedures
  • People Focused: look after your people, their needs, listen to them and involve them

Stop and Observe


I always remember this saying “Walk slowly through the crowd”. One of my leaders that I followed when I first started to step into leadership was John Maxwell.

This was one of his  teachings that I have always remembered.

What does this mean?  We are always in such a hurry at in our haste, we simply don’t notice things or pay attention at times. Walk through the crowd slowly; was something that John Maxwell would speak about often. It involved taking a short time out on a regular basis to get to know your people.

Observe them in their normal working routine. Show a genuine interest in how they are performing, what challenges do  they experience, listen to their ideas and build those professional relationships based on trust. Get to know your team members before you start to make any changes within your team.

Building positive workplace relationships is vital for team  success. Relationships can positively or negatively affect your team’s satisfaction within their  job, their ability to gain buy in and recognize you as their leader and your achievements.

When you build positive relationships, you feel more comfortable with your interactions and less intimidated by others. You feel a closer bond to the team that  you spend most of your time working with.

However, for a lot of people, relationship building isn’t natural or easy to do. Most refuse to admit this is a concern because it is such a basic, common sense concept. They assume they already know how to do it. Don’t fall into that trap. Everyone – even the most outgoing, engaging personalities – can improve their skills in this critical area.

Here are some tips to build Positive Workplace Relationships within your team

Provide opportunities within your meetings for others to share their expertise

Validate and praise others in public – Show them that you appreciate their efforts

Work alongside of some of your team members – Divide up a project and delegate different tasks out to your team members – encourage collaboration and work along with them.

Leave thank you notes or special messages on their desks. Show them that you appreciate their efforts

Ask questions instead of telling – Encourage new ideas and different perspectives from the team  your team members. Show a interest in their contribution.

Provide feedback regularly - The strategy of providing feedback annually or bi-annually is no longer enough.

Today, working in a team is a continuous process involving a wide array of people and focusing on developing and continuous learning.

My challenge to you this week is to do just that; SLOW DOWN…intentionally. Make an effort to be more aware of your surroundings and those people that are near you; in your home, at the grocery store, at work or at the game.

Reach out and meet new people, help those in physical need, speak wisdom to those in spiritual need; just share your love and positive influence with them. You will be amazed at the impact you will make on them as well as yourself.

 I would love to hear about your experience

Holding your Team Accountable


Below is a list of some work ethics that you will need to observe. Rate 1 – 10 for each of the points below for your individual team members. ( Score of 10 high performing – 0 Lowest)

Punctuality –  0 - 10

Employees who regularly arrive late for work or are frequently absent from the office are unlikely to be meeting their performance objectives.  Do they arrive on time for meetings? Do they complete tasks on time?

 Quality of work: 0 – 10

The timely completion of projects to the desired standard is a key indicator in measuring employee performance. Is the work being carried out average or outstanding?

Observe personal habits: 0 - 10

Perpetual bad habits can detract from employee performance. This may include indulging in office gossip, taking unauthorized breaks, disruptive behavior and the use of computers for personal reasons (such as social media, online shopping).

Check their attitude: 0 - 10

A bad attitude will often manifest itself in insubordinate behavior.  Do they resist feedback and make excuses as to why tasks are not completed on time? What is reality?

Carry out random checks: 0 - 10

Depending on the nature of your business consider implementing random checks against quality standards. Are your team members following the standard processes and systems? Is the information accurate and well presented?

Join our 6 Week Boot Camp Conflict Management- On Demand Training with Follow Up Coaching

Take the 6 Week Boot Camp Conflict Management On Demand Training Program. This is a self paced online program combined with weekly group Q + A Coaching Sessions that are conducted live Personally by Lee Stemm. 

Each week you will receive your module videos with activity sheets and assessments. This program provides access to the training material 24/7 with support along the way.

During the program you will have unlimited email access and an option of private sessions with Lee

About the Author

I coach women, online business owners, to take consistent action to get their online courses launched and sold out.

My primary focus is on unlocking limiting beliefs that hold them back, list building, and live launching of their courses, primarily via webinars and easy-to-follow blueprints that step them through the complete process.

I lead the way by being in the trenches, studying with the top online course creators in the world, implementing all the latest proven strategies in my own business, experimenting, measuring, teaching from experience that truly works.

Through a mix of coaching, hand-holding, and honest feedback,

I hold my client's aspirations close to my heart, never leaving them behind feeling isolated or disillusioned

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