The 10 Steps to Becoming a Great Leader
While you might have an in-depth knowledge of your industry, it is your leadership skills (or lack of them) that could be holding you back in business. After all, nothing can fill employees with dread quite like a negative, unhelpful boss who never listens to their opinion or helps them reach their potential.
If you want to inspire your team to work harder and drive a company into the future, you might need to improve your soft and hard skills. To transform your management style, read the following ten steps to becoming a great leader.
Step 1: Maintain Honesty and Integrity
A good leader practices what they preach. Maintaining honesty and integrity each day will encourage your employees to follow in your footsteps. So, be honest when something isn’t working, never cut corners, and don’t embark on underhand tactics to achieve a company’s goals.
Step 2: Prioritize and Delegate Tasks
Successful leaders understand the importance of prioritizing tasks, as it will ensure a company meets important deadlines and continually maintains customer satisfaction. Not only must you rank jobs each day, but you also must avoid carrying all the burden.
Instead, you must identify the individual strengths of each employee to effectively delegate a task, which will ensure it is delivered on time to the highest standard.
Step 3: Clear, Constant Communication
A lack of communication can lead to confusion and low morale, which can impact quality and productivity. Ensure your staff never feel left in the dark by clearly communicating with individuals about their tasks and responsibilities, and regularly check-in to see if they need further advice or support. It might also be beneficial to utilize different forms of communication, such as:
- Online messaging
- A project management tool
- Face-to-face meetings
Your staff can then ask any questions they might have with ease, which can lead to greater clarity and confidence when working on a project.
Step 4: Boost Your Management Expertise with an MBA
If you believe your business management style needs a little work, you should consider the online MBA’s available at Southern Cross University, which can improve your business skill set. While you have the option to study a general MBA, which will cover everything from health services management to accounting, you could specialize in a subject, such as managing and leading people.
Step 5: Have Confidence in Your Ability
Poor leadership skills could stem from a lack of confidence in your ability. It is, however, important to remember that your employees are looking to you for both direction and assurance.
Rather than allowing low self-esteem to damage your career and the business, try to lead with confidence. So, speak honestly and clearly, remain calm during a high-pressure situation, and never lose sight of the company’s goals.
Step 6: Express a Positive Attitude and Demeanor
A negative attitude and demeanor will not only drain any atmosphere from the business, but it could make your employees question the company’s success or longevity, which could make them fear for their jobs or could encourage them to seek employment elsewhere.
To keep your employees both happy and motivated, you must display a positive attitude each working day. An optimistic outlook could lift your team members’ spirits, which could prevent them from becoming overwhelmed by a stressful task, project or the business.
Step 7: Be Creative
It is likely your business will come up against many challenges and unusual situations throughout the years. While it might be tempting to play it safe, this could lead to a lack of growth and profitability.
Prove you are an innovative company by being as creative as possible each working day. Not only can this help to set your business apart from its rivals, but your creativity could inspire your employees to also think outside the box, which should be regularly encouraged.
Step 8: Trust Your Judgement
While an effective leader should listen to the advice and opinions of their mentors, colleagues, and employees, they also must trust their own judgment. Listening to your gut could prevent you from making a big mistake, and you should have a backup plan in place should a strategy not go your way.
If you are uncertain about the best step to take, draw on the skills and knowledge of the people around you, but know the decision is primarily on your shoulders, so follow your instinct.
Step 9: Be Inspiring
Reach your goals at a faster rate by inspiring your team each working day. To do so, you will need to unite different departments by focusing on a shared vision for the company.
For example, you could inspire your team by pushing boundaries, setting working standards and taking a genuine interest in their personal goals. You also must celebrate all company achievements together, which will make your employees feel a part of a close-knit unit and will prove how much you value their hard work as individuals and as a collective.
Step 10: Tweak Your Leadership Style
Your business will be made up of multiple personalities, who will each have different working styles and communication preferences. The key to good leadership is to recognize how an employee likes to work and communicate, so you can tailor your approach to their needs.
For example, while some employees enjoy brainstorming sessions and regular collaborations, others might work better with a set list of tasks and a quiet, calm environment. You must take the time to gain an understanding of their preferences, which can boost internal efficiency, morale, and productivity.
There is no such thing as the perfect leader. Yet, there are many ways you can improve your management style, as you must have confidence in your ability to drive a business to success and be willing to trust your gut each day.
What’s more, you must understand how your behavior can affect your employees. Therefore, you must display a positive, inspiring and helpful demeanor to increase your staff members’ job satisfaction, productivity levels, and ambition.