Last Updated on March 3, 2022 by Coach M
During the Covid-19 pandemic, it has become clear that some leaders have better leadership skills than others.
Your team are always observing you and making judgements on your leadership. Are you showing the kind of leadership that your team want to follow?
Let’s begin with what kind of person is a real leader.
Table of Contents
1. What is a leader?
A leader is not a position, but an ability.
The ability to be trusted by team members and to ensure that work is carried out, the ability to set goals within the organization, maintain the motivation of the team, and produce results.
It’s like a captain who decides where to sail and takes command of setting the course.
2. What abilities do leaders need?
Peter F. Drucker, a world-famous management consultant, wrote in his book:
”At the first such basic competence, I would put the willingness, ability, and self-discipline to listen. Listening is not a skill; it’s a discipline. Anybody can do it. All you have to do is keep your mouth shut.” (P.F. Drucker, Management of a Non-Profit Organization)
As I mentioned earlier, leadership is an ability which means you can be trained and everyone can become a better leader. So what kind of capabilities do you need?
You need to lead yourself before you lead a others.
This starts with self-awareness: understanding one’s values and beliefs, and looking at yourself objectively.
Knowing yourself will make you to become a person of principle and thus not affected by others.
And a high EQ (Emotional intelligence) is also important.
2-2. Gaining trust
In order to earn people’s trust, it is important to have consistency with your words, do what you say, and to have a strong sense of responsibility.
Also, by approving the other person and being able to find and develop their strengths, they will feel the value of their existence and therefore they will trust and follow you.
Everyone wants to feel rewarded by using their strengths in their job rather than just having their weaknesses pointed out.
2-3. Set goals and deliver them to the team
You need the skills to set goals and deliver them clearly to your team.
2-4. The ability to execute
The ability to take action to reach the goal. This starts with taking the initiative and being a role model.
2-5. Strong communication skills
Each team member has their own personality. By communicating according to the characteristics of the individual, it is easy to build a relationship of trust and increase their motivation.
Most business problems are caused by miscommunication. Even using the same words, the way of taking meaning from them is different depending on the sense of values and experience.
You can prevent miscommunication by making sure that other people have a good understanding of what you have said.
In addition, empathy and the ability to respect other people’s values and beliefs also facilitates communication.
2-6. Decision making
You have to make quick and serious decisions, so you always have to be calm and logical so that you don’t get carried away by emotion and make the wrong decision.
This can be trained for by looking at yourself objectively and by making a habit of observing your emotions.
When you’re at a loss for a decision, it’s also a good idea to think about what kind of decision your mentor would make.
2-7. Finding and solving problems
The ability not only to focus on the problem in front of you, but also to get a holistic view of things and find the underlying problem.
Pain relief works to get rid of headaches, but the problem reoccurs if the root cause is not treated.
This is the same in business. Even if you put out the fire of a temporary problem in front of you, it is not solving a root cause of the real problem.
It is called ”not seeing the forest for the trees”, but it is important to be able to see the whole picture without focusing on small problems.
3. What you can do right now to improve your leadership skills
It is important to have introspection time every day, especially when we live in the society where unnecessary information flows and it is easy to get distracted.
By testing self-awareness, such as with a strength finder, you can understand yourself and know your strength and weakness.
When you feel anger, sadness, or joy, training yourself to look at yourself objectively makes it less likely to be carried away by emotions.
Before you say a word, try to make it a habit to think about things from the other person’s point of view. Change yourself first, if you want to change the other person.
3-3. Satisfy desire for recognition
We tend to forget to look other people in the eye when we greet due to our busy life. The first thing you can do is acknowledge the other person’s existence.
Every person has strong points, so try to look at their strengths, not weaknesses. And It would be great if you could give them a compliment about it.
People’s view of the world depends on their background, so let’s keep in mind that it is natural to have different values, beliefs and ways of thinking.
3-4. Listen to other person
It’s easy to impose your opinion on your subordinates, but let’s make it a habit to listen to them.
Even if you can only do these four things, you will feel the changes around you.
If your subordinates work productively, you as a leader also will be able to work productively, which will lead to results.
To influence people, you need to be a role model and become the person they want to follow.
The work of making small improvement in yourself every day will produce big results in the future.