Easy Ways For Everyone To Be A Better Leader
No matter how long you have been a leader, there is always room to grow.
There is an old but true saying:
If you’re green you’re growing, when you’re ripe, you rot.
Leaders who fail to become better by thinking they have arrived or they don’t need any further teaching or training are in eminent danger of losing their credibility, effectiveness and even imploding in their professional and personal lives.
The most stable, successful and credible leaders have a plan in place for their growth. In spite of their busy schedules, they make time and take time to develop themselves. And quite frankly, so can the rest of us.
So here are five easy ways we can all be better leaders starting today.
Be Truly Self-Aware. Absolutely no one can improve unless they know what thy need to work on. This involves admission of who you are, a desire to improve and the willingness to accept any criticism about yourself. Knowing your shortcomings, flaws, and tendencies is the first rung on the ladder to continued improvement and the most important. Then resolve to fix them one step at a time.
Truly Listen. There are leaders who tell their employees to work harder when they bring up that processes are broken, and there are leaders who will delve into finding the process failures to help their employees work more efficiently and not harder. Listening is truly listening, accepting that everyone has value and their input is meaningful. Helping and seeking to understand others is a characteristic we can always continue to work on.
Read in Context. One of the most challenging areas in communication is doing a quick read of an email, document, or even a text and not understanding the context of what’s read. In those cases, misdirection, wrong counsel, or wasted time in emails and call to clarify could have been prevented if we stopped to process the information. In this current climate of email barrage and limited attention spans, it’s more crucial than ever to master the art of understanding context in order to be a more effective leader.
Be Curious. A dynamic leader is one who learns the world around themselves. Whether it’s industry information, knowledge outside their industry, or learning about other people and their experiences will deepen your relatability, help you be more conversational, and will increase your storytelling in speaking and personal situations. Always find an opportunity to grow your knowledge beyond what you’re focuses are. Ask questions to grow yourself and others.
Speak to Edify. An easy way to boost your impactfulness and get people to trust you is to never talk ill of others. Leaders that defer a critique of someone, and speak their highlights rather than take an opportunity to make a dig are rare. Those that edify allies and enemies in their speech will never have their people wonder what is being said about them – they know their leader speaks highly of them. A quick pause to reflect on what you’re about to say will greatly aid in your leadership development.
No matter where you are in your career, these steps can enhance your growth and create a better dynamic among your teams and organization.
Work on these areas this week and leave a comment below as to how you’ve seen improvements in your leadership!