Developing strong leadership skills can transform your professional life. As you develop leadership skills, you become more attuned to your strengths and weaknesses, which creates self-awareness and the ability to relate to others.
But, if you don’t feel like a natural born leader it can be hard to know where to start. Whether that sounds like you, or you’re already in a leadership position and are looking to improve your skills further, these six strategies will help you transform in to a great leader:
- Inspire your people: Being a leader means you represent a team, and as a leader, you should be able to inspire and motivate those you work with to collaborate while utilising their full potential. When a team member needs guidance, encouragement or support, offer it. Sometimes, all a person needs is someone to listen and be sympathetic.
- Setting goals and expectations: Setting clear goals and employee expectations for your team is key to employee success. When setting these objectives, encourage employee questions and feedback. Including them in the process can increase engagement. Setting employee expectations can eliminate or reduce confusion and increase the chances of employees successfully achieving the goals set for them.”
- Handle challenges and risky situations: Risky or complex decisions are difficult to make so most people prefer to avoid such decisions. Your team will therefore contact you for advice. And you need to take responsibility and suggest the best course of action immediately. Ultimately, leaders create trust and encourage others to follow suit. Therefore, leaders must be able to make difficult decisions, often under pressure. Without this ability, there is no direction to go. However, tough choices are problematic for several reasons.
- Coach better by giving feedback: Providing direct, honest feedback, even if it’s criticism, is the best way to guide your team in the right direction. You also need to know exactly where your business is headed to give them the right advice. Acknowledging successes by outlining how it impacts the business, rather than with vague pats on the back, is encouraging and helps a person work better in the long run.
- Engage in honest communication: Creating an open communication line with your team members is one of the critical elements of effective leadership. Great leaders should be able to customise and personalise their interaction styles to suit situations and individuals. Displaying active communication skills and transparency can build trust among your team and improve overall morale.
- Resolving conflict: The most effective leaders have the self-awareness and wisdom to confront and diffuse the tension. Instead of ignoring interpersonal conflicts, hoping they will go away, address them by talking to those involved privately. Be opportunistic when dealing with conflict resolution. A conflict can be a healthy enabler of growth for your business and professional development for all of the people involved.
Remember that becoming a good leader takes time. Although some individuals are naturally inclined to have good leadership skills, anyone can learn and improve. With hard work, dedication and strategic planning, you can lead your team to success.
Liliana Chitnis is a former HR professional who now works as a content marketing executive at Naman, an organization that offers end-to-end HR solutions to help companies build a strong human capital base. She strongly believes in the power of consistent training in the workplace. Liliana writes about various topics related to human resources and shares trends, techniques, and tips with her readers. She loves to read and practice yoga regularly, and occasionally binge on Netflix.