Although conventional wisdom often says that great leaders are born, not made, history has proven otherwise. Many people in a position of leadership have benefited greatly from learning more about the characteristics and habits of effective leaders. This article contains some tips and suggestions for those who are interested in this topic.
Use a mentor. Find someone whose leadership skills you trust, and model your behavior after theirs. Watch them for a while, and get an idea of how they lead and what makes them a good leader. You don’t want to mimic them completely, but find what works about their style and incorporate it into a style that works for you.
When you’re a leader, you’ll need to be accountable. If you make a mistake, admit it and move on. It can be easy to push the blame onto other people, but this should really be avoided. If you’re accountable when you’ve made a mistake, the people around you will feel the need to be more accountable if they’ve made a mistake.
A successful leader needs to maintain a balanced public and private life. Having a good reputation in the community is vital to continued success. Being in a leadership role invites scrutiny, so it is important to maintain humility and exercise moderation. Do not give anyone something to point to that disqualifies you as a leader.
Be sure that you spend some time each day out of your office, and in the midst of the workforce. Try to be a part of the group, while maintaining your leadership role. You can use this time to get to know your employees, ask questions or even join them for lunch.
Be sure to finish everything you start or you risk losing the respect of the people that work under you. Even if something seems particularly difficult, you should give it your all and see it through to the end. No one will look at you the same if you turn into a quitter.
Once you become a leader, do not make the mistake of believing your job is done. While you may have won the first part of the battle, there is a lot more to come. You have to work hard every day to show people that you deserve to be where you are.
Being a good leader doesn’t just mean that you lead others. You also need the skills to lead yourself. Leading yourself by staying motivated and focused can also set a great example for others. Make an effort to become a working part of your organization and not just delegate tasks to others.
A great idea for anyone in a leadership role to try is to periodically write an “open letter” to the team members, or workforce. In this letter, you can acknowledge good work, overall performance and show your appreciation for all they do. There is nothing like a little praise to boost morale.
Effective leadership does not simply just happen. Effective leaders take the time to learn about traits that successful leaders have and habits that they practice. Good leaders can become great ones by studying these characteristics, and it is an education that should continue throughout the duration of one’s tenure.