There are leaders who are just average and then there are those special leaders who stand out from the pack. If you want to be one of them here are 5 leadership qualities you must develop.
Truly great leaders always inspire passion in those around them to move things forward and make the business the best it can be. The answer to how you inspire passion in others is to first look inwards. Passion is infectious so by rediscovering your own passion you will organically transmit that to others through your communication skills.
Exhibits Thought Leadership
Someone who espouses thought leadership encourages their team to think of themselves not just as another company that provides this service or sells that product along with its competitors, but as the company that all the others look up to. Thought leadership means adopting a mindset that is endlessly inquisitive, and being willing to look beyond known methods to try out new strategies. It also means being flexible and decisive, since not all ideas will work out, so a thought leader knows when to switch horses mid-race.
Being decisive is an absolutely essential quality that every great leader needs to possess. This is about much more than the ability to make snap decisions. Remember that holding off on a decision when it's the right move is a decision too. The key to being decisive is knowing when a direction is chosen, what you are going to do, or not going to do, and why. That direction becomes a commitment that you move your energy and direction towards. You must also convey that to those around you continually, in words and actions, as confidence flows outwards from decisive clear-cut leadership.
A good leader knows how to manage his or her team and foster a good working environment. If there is a new project getting started or you have an influx of new people, a fun team building activity can be a great way to kick things off. If there’s a hobby you have, such as sailing, you can always start with that and have your people see you be a leader in a more fun relaxed environment. While indoor social activities are good, a outdoor activity that gets your people working together is always a great idea.
The saying goes that you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. This does not means you go have to go easy on your people – some businesses thrive on a tough driven environment – but that you respect them. If you show you respect your staff, then they are much more likely to take your criticisms well and improve when they fall short. Do not estimate the power of small gestures, and show respect for people at all levels of the company. A mid-ranking employee is far more likely to be impressed by how well you treat temporary staff and janitorial workers than how you treat senior executives and middle management.
By mastering these five critical attributes, you can become a leader among leaders.