By reading this document you will understand how to improve your leadership in 5 steps:
- what leadership means,
- what skills you need to be a leader,
- how you can improve your leadership skills.
- how a coach can help you
Step 1. Understand: what is leadership?
Leadership is the art of motivating a group of people to act towards achieving a common goal.
They are the person in the group that possesses the combination of personality and leadership skills to make others want to follow their direction.
Step 2. What are leadership skills and their advantages?
Leadership involves personality (living values) and the mastering of skills.
Why are leadership skills important? The advantages of leadership skills.
Effective leaders are essential to any organization. They can help build strong teams within a business and ensure projects, initiatives or other work functions are performed successfully. Because the skills of a leader involve multiple interpersonal and communication skills, anyone can exercise and hone their leadership abilities.
Good leadership is also contagious, inspiring colleagues to apply positive leadership traits in their own work.
Good leaders increase employee engagement, support a positive environment and help remove obstacles for their team.
Most people have seen the results of both effective and ineffective leaders on the job.
Step 3. What are the most important leadership skills?
First, in this article I don’t make a distinction between leadership and management skills.
Not all managers are leaders but all leaders can be managers.
Leaders are self-aware.
This skill is often forgotten but nevertheless the basics of everything you do in life.
Do you know yourself?
Are you living the life you are supposed to live?
Do you want to be a leader?
What kind of leader do you want to be?
Do you have humor?
You admit when you are wrong because you know thats the way you learn.
You acknowledge a situation and you adapt to it.
Are you proactive?
Are you accountable and responsible?
Leaders are trustworthy, responsible. positive, empathic and compassionate.
In most articles that I read on leadership, never compassion was listed as a skill.
Skill number 1 is about you.
Skill number 2 is about the other.
You are your own leader but a leader means that you lead others too.
You will read about many different type of leadership.
To me there is one one type of leader.
The compassionate leader.
If you are not a compassionate leader, you are fake.
You don’t live life.
The Corona virus showed that most leaders are disconnected from life.
They are so far from life that Life placed them checkmate through the coronavirus.
Do you know what compassion is? What does it mean?
Compassion is a process. It’s not there such as…
- First you need to have the ability to see the needs (or interests) of others.
- Second, you want to genuinely understand the needs (or interests) of others. This means by taking distance from your own judgments, prejudices and (negative) thoughts.
- Third, You really want to help the person.
Leaders are strategic thinkers
Developing a vision of where you want to be.
You are very clear in your objective and you are enthusiastic about them. You know how to manage a project and analyze each step.
You enjoy the steps as much as the goals.
Leaders plan and deliver
Planning how to achieve your vision and dealing with challenges along the way.
Leaders are flexible
You know the path to the goal but you know there will be hurdles to take.
So you are so flexible that you take them in style.
You know what you want and you are prepared to take risks.
You don’t need anything for free and you know what is of value to reach your goals.
Leaders lead change and manage change.
Recognizing, responding and managing changes to your vision and plans.
Leaders are communicators.
Working on the best ways to communicate your vision to others and listening to ideas.
Communication involves one to one meetings to group meetings.
Mastering of communication skills and public speaking skills.
But it is not only to transfer your vision of that of the company only.
The most difficult skill to master is to listen.
Leaders persuade, motivate and influence.
Encouraging others to help you achieve your vision by demonstrating its advantages.
Leaders are coaches, teachers and mentors that give feedback.
One of the skills that differentiates leadership from many other competencies is the ability to teach and mentor. Effectively teaching colleagues or direct reports how to grow in their careers helps organizations scale. Often, this skill requires that leaders think less about themselves and more about how to make their team as a whole successful.
Leaders are decisions takers
Effective leaders are those who can make decisions quickly with the information they have. Effective decision-making comes with time and experience.
As you become more familiar with your specific industry, you’ll be able to make decisions faster, even when you don’t have all of the necessary information.
Decisiveness is seen as a valuable leadership skill because it can help move projects along faster and improve efficiency.
Leaders live integrity
Integrity is often seen as just truthfulness or honesty but in many cases, it also means having and standing by a set of strong values.
Integrity in the workplace often means being able to make ethical choices and helping the company maintain a positive image.
All businesses seek to hire workers who have a strong sense of integrity.
Leaders build relationships and teams
Leadership requires the ability to build and maintain a strong and collaborative team of individuals working toward the same goal. Team building requires other leadership strengths, like effective communication skills and conflict resolution.
Leaders inspire confidence.
Because you are self-aware, you have all the reasons to be self-confident.
Being a dependable leader means that people can trust and rely on you. A dependable person follows through on plans and keeps promises.
You are a person in balance.
The strong relationships built by a dependable leader create a resilient team that is able to work through difficulties that may arise.
Leaders are creativity and learn constantly.
Do you know it all or are you still willing to learn?
One of my best friends is an investor and he is 75 years old. He is very curious and what will remind me of him is that he always wants to understand. He doesn’t waste time on something without going to the point that he understands.
Leaders manage and respect time.
Leaders are conscious about their time and the time of other people.
Conscious means that you respect the value of your time and the time of others and that time is limited and thus precious.
Leaders manage finances
Money is an important tool. Not a goal per se.
Leaders are professionals and master business skills in their field
This means at least the knowledge and understanding of what is going on in their scope of work.
If you are in fashion you at least understand what fabrics are and where they are coming from.
I don’t believe in ‘pure’ managers that are disconnected from the core service or product from the business.
What specialized knowledge do you have? Or can you acquire it.
Are you a technical expert too?
Is there a link between the top management and the employees?
Step 4. How to improve your leadership skills?
You can practice good leadership skills in any role, at any level.
For example, showing up on time to meetings and turning in work on schedule shows dependability.
Offering support and coaching to less experienced colleagues is also an example of leadership.
If it seems like a good fit for you, you might consider seeking out leadership roles to develop and practice your leadership skills.
Here are some examples of additional ways you can develop your leadership skills:
Identify your leadership style
While you will use different styles of leadership for different occasions, identifying your leadership style can help you refine specific skills that will be effective for your team or project. You might use your team or project’s goals to help identify what leadership styles will be most effective for you.
Find resources like books or podcasts about leadership
A self-study on leadership may help you get a better understanding of how to develop your leadership skills. Many books on the subject exist, including the 1937 Dale Carnegie book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, which has been a favorite among many business leaders for decades. There are also many podcasts and video workshops you can find offered at no cost online.
Participate in leadership training courses or workshops
You can find both in-person and online courses that help teach leadership skills. In person courses, in particular, often include practice sessions and role play.
Find leadership activities outside of work
If you have trouble finding leadership opportunities on the job, you may be able to find them outside of your workplace. This can include taking the lead in organizing activities or work outings with your colleagues.
Study leadership styles you admire
When you see leaders you admire whether they are at your job or in your community, take note of the specific qualities they have that make them a great leader. Focus on ways you can develop those qualities and apply them in your work. It might also be helpful to set specific goals toward developing one practice at a time.
Find a coach.
The best way to learn is by studying under those you admire most. If possible, ask a leader you respect to mentor you on a weekly or monthly basis. They can help you set goals toward becoming a better leader by developing skills and using them.
Step 5. Leaders are open to coaching to improve.
Leadership coaching is an individualized process that builds a leader’s capability to achieve short- and long-term organizational goals.
Our coaching is personalized, customized, usually conducted one-on-one for a defined period of time and with a specific (business) purpose in mind.