Many people say that great leaders are simply born, but in our opinion they must be grown. While someone can start out with the capability for great leadership, they will not achieve greatness without the skill set and willingness to move forward. Here, we have compiled some expert tips on what it takes to become a great leader. Use this as part of your educational component, and start to grow your leadership abilities.
When attending meetings, act like you're stupid and don't know anything. You are not actually stupid, of course, but adopting this mindset makes you more likely to accept input from other people who may actually know more than you do. Arrogance has been the downfall of many business leaders, after all.
Be confident in a decision before you share it with others. If you look indecisive, that will cause those beneath you to be indecisive as well. Not only that, but indecision causes others to be able to try to take your position. Instead, deliberate in private before you make any announcements.
As a leader, you must not play favorites. Playing favorites will get you into trouble. Those who you do not favor will be none too pleased and not respect you. They may even report your favoritism. If you have a good friend on your team, you may want to think about transferring to another department to avoid the conflict of interest.
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To help your employees reach goals, set monthly as well as yearly goals. These goals will help spur your employees and help them know what your expectations are. By understanding your expectations, your employees will stay on task and strive to reach the goals. Monthly goals should be easily attainable with hardwork.
Work on building trust with the people that work with you. People need to feel that they can trust their leader. This can motivate them to succeed and help build cooperation and understanding in the company. You should inspire others so that their trust in you can help tasks get completed properly.
Be a communicator. Communication is a major aspect of what makes great leadership. If you can't communicate your goals and vision, then what is there for your employees to follow at all? If you have a tendency to "loan wolf" at work, break out of that habit and begin communicating with your teams.
Don't rely on email to manage your team. Overreliance on email makes you seem like a distant emperor who hands down edicts from on high. You will not only build resentment among your team, but also miss out on the chance to build relationships that will improve productivity in the long run.
Be as approachable as you can. Some leaders believe that intimidation and bullying is the best way to establish who's in charge. It is not a good strategy, however; it only makes your team dislike you. Be kind, caring and compassionate instead.
Be prepared for conflict and try to deal with it before it gets out of hand. Ignoring conflict will make the problem worse and make you look too weak to handle it. Practicing good communication skills with your employees will help them feel more respected even if they don't agree with specific decisions.
As a leader, it is necessary to maintain an optimistic attitude in the workplace. Displaying a lack of confidence and expressing doubts about your team's chances of success is not the way to motivate your team. You can't expect to receive their best effort if they feel they are doomed to fail.
Stress is bound to be a large part of any leadership role. Instead of letting stress contaminate your goals and mindset, find ways to stay positive. Many times, if there is a deadline, or other issue, that is causing undue stress, you can break it down into smaller parts. It is easier to be positive when you feel less pressure.
When a mistake happens, a good leader will use the situation as a chance to learn something, instead of a chance to criticize. Talking about mistakes that were made and discussing the situation with others on the team helps reduce future missteps.
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Besides recognizing your employees talents, you must also know your own strengths and weaknesses. Evaluate your own abilities often and work to improve on those areas that are weaker. Become a better manager by attending leadership training courses, continuing your formal education and adopting a mentor who is a successful business leader.
Don't get too bogged down in your everyday tasks. As the leader, you need to look at the big picture. Keep your vision in mind as you look to the future of your business. Evaluate every employee, their individual talents and how they can continue to grow as your business expands.
Two qualities that employees should be able to expect from their leaders are trust, and confidentiality. A good leader will make it clear that any employee can confide in him, and not risk information being shared with others. It is unacceptable for anyone in a leadership role to break the confidence of anyone.
Great leaders believe in those they are leading. Surround yourself with talented people and then inspire them to greatness by believing in their ability to reach their full potential. When you expect the best of someone, they will typically go out of their way to live up to that expectation.
Never get defensive when receiving feedback, even if it seems negative. Create an environment where your employees feel free to offer both positive and negative feedback. You can't solve a problem if you are unwilling to hear about it. Listen respectfully and know that solutions to problems can come from anyone within your organization.
While some great leaders are born, most take years to fully grow into their roles. If you are trying to grow into your leadership role, the advice presented in this post will undoubtedly help. Review these tips time and time again, and do all you can to master them. By doing that, you will most certainly become a person that any team would be glad to call their leader.