7 Tips to Guide You Towards Becoming a Successful Young Professional Leader

By Kelsie Chinn

1. Do Good Work

This might be the simplest and most effective tip, but it is often the most overlooked. Lead by example. Do the best you can do, ask questions and try to exceed all expectations.

2. Get a Mentor

A mentor is a trusted advisor with more experience or status who teaches you in a constructive partnership. Learn from your mentor’s experience, while your mentor grows and benefits from your fresh perspective and knowledge.

3. Find Your “Why”

Whether you’re an entrepreneur, an employee, a leader of a team or division or you want to tackle the WHY of your organization, discovering your WHY injects passion into your work. And it’s those who start with WHY that have the ability to inspire those around them.

4. Take on an Initiative or Side Project

Many organizations have leadership opportunities on business development groups or committees. Leading one of these groups can increase your exposure to other leaders and managers in your organization. Professional associations typically have committees that also provide great opportunities for leadership, networking and self-marketing.

Nothing will undermine your leadership efforts more than being a source of office gossip or negative talk.

5. Stay Above the Fray

In any organization, it pays to be friendly and communicative with all your coworkers. But it is equally important to stay away from the gossip and backbiting that sometimes goes on in the workplace. Leaders need to be credible and honest. Nothing will undermine your leadership efforts more than being a source of office gossip or negative talk. If you are in a bad situation organizationally, don’t complain. The best thing you can do is step up your efforts to lead. Handling the situation in a focused and professional manner will cast you in the most positive light with management.

6. Thinking Beyond Ourselves, The Value of Engaging

Volunteering is an excellent way to boost your career prospects. It helps you create a positive impression, makes you more innovative, creative and gives you a range of successful skills.

7. Ask for Advancement

Once you decide what you want to do in your organization and what the next logical step for your career advancement should be, tell your immediate supervisor. Your supervisor’s success is directly and positively affected by your success, so in most cases your supervisor will help you be successful. If your supervisor is not receptive or helpful, it might be time to reassess your situation.



Kelsie Chinn is the Marketing and Development Manager for the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame. She graduated from Longwood University in 2012. After moving to Knoxville in 2015, Kelsie fell instantly in love with the community. She joined YPK in the Spring of 2016 and is also Vice President of Rotaract. In her spare time, Kelsie enjoys going on new adventures with her husband and their three dogs,  Abby, Bailey and Ellie.