Do you consider yourself a leader? Or wish you were a leader? I believe everyone is a leader – of ourselves and others in various different aspects of our lives. As leaders we have to inspire those around us while remaining focused. Uncertainty and difficult situations do not stop us from taking leadership charge. We need a positive mindset, a focus on team engagement and inspiring change.
Focus on purpose. If you focus on why your team exists and how it adds value, you will be able to engage the team at a deeper level. Purpose is a key motivator
Leaders use many strategies to lead others. Using these techniques will aid you in your endeavour to be a great leader:
- Follow through on your promises. A real leader keeps the promises made during meetings, especially regarding personal development, growth and support.
- Avoid micromanaging and empower individuals. Micromanaging can have a negative impact on the group you’re trying to lead. People are motivated by autonomy.
- Respect the opinions of others. Allow them to share their ideas. Listen carefully without judgement or referring to what has or hasn’t worked in the past.
- Listen to the needs of others. If you listen carefully, you’ll discover more about what motivates your team members.
- Avoid procrastinating. It can destroy your leadership goals. Rather make a decision with 60-70% of the information than avoid making a decision at all.
- Stay focused on the outcome. Once you make a decision, adapt if necessary or the outcome will not be achieved. Share your change thoughts with the team.
- Share your vulnerability. Your leadership will benefit from showing a human side and more empathy for others. Showing vulnerability is a sign of strength.
- Look for answers outside of the norm. The ability to think differently is a crucial leadership skill and much needed for creativity and disrupted business models.
- Admit mistakes, don’t blame others. Pretending that a mistake didn’t happen or abdicating responsibility will make your teams lose respect for you.
- Brainstorm with your team. Find solutions together, it activates the collective brain power of the team and they feel like they’re part of the process to resolve.
- Avoid making others feel small or scared. Fear, superiority and an attitude of knowing everything can prevent positive interactions.
- Allow your team room to grow. They need to be able to make progress and set their own goals. Mastering tasks and demonstrating achievement are key.
- Create a safe environment where everyone’s views count. As a leader, you can make better progress if the entire team is able to say what they really think.
- Share your knowledge and expertise. Coach and guide others with your experiences and support, without telling them what to do.
- Make time for the team and for the individual members. The more time you spend on bonding and connecting the team and on individual growth the more successful you will be as a leader.
- Break down the hierarchy. The greater the power distance to your team, the less likely they are to share their thoughts openly, possibly increasing ineffectiveness.
- Be transparent, avoid gossip. Rumours and innuendo ruin team dynamics and energy. Be open about what is happening and when you can disclose information.
- Stay flexible and agile. Adjusting to what is required in the moment and adapting to external factors means thriving in uncertainty. One size does not fit all.
- Lead and inspire change. In increasingly volatile environments, leaders need to embrace change as an opportunity and help others move through their fears.
- Treat team members as individuals. Different personalities require different leadership strategies.
- Manage your confidence and how you show up. The energy of the leader is like a contagion. The more positivity you reveal the more positive the team will be.
- Be a positive role model with a positive mindset. Be an action-based leader that lives positive behaviours that inspire followers. Focus on a growth mindset, continually learning and embracing new possibilities.
- Follow a strengths-based approach. Rely on the strengths of individuals in the team and complement your weaknesses
- Be a mentor and mentee. A real leader is willing to help the next generation and willing to learn from their perspectives to be better leader.