Today’s guest post is about leadership, from a younger perspective than mine, but the thoughts are almost universal.
Being a leader within a workplace is about more than having an enviable title and corner office. There are opportunities that the leaders identify and use to get to where they are. There are years of dedication, long hours, and hard work. Different traits help these individuals excel and achieve their position.
Beyond working hard with a purpose, certain characteristics help leaders stand at the helm with subordinates looking up to them. Here are a few traits leaders should possess and how they can be developed.
Confidence is the key to life. It allows you to make decisions and know that they are the right one. Conversely, confidence allows you to bounce back when you make the wrong decision and keep moving forward.
If you lack confidence, there are a few things you can do to develop it. Take care of yourself physically and mentally, dressing for success and keeping up with hygiene. Think positively about yourself and practice positive self-talk. Finally, write down your accomplishments and strengths and keep them posted somewhere you can see them often to reflect.
Know Problems and Offer Solutions
To become a leader you must take the time to learn the workings of an organization from the inside out so that you can identify problems. Then, using your confidence, offer solutions. For example, if you figure out a more efficient way for payroll to add up Excel timesheets (which you can view here) share the resource. If you find a social media scheduling app that would help the marketing department save time, direct them to it.
Being a problem solver not only shows your managers that you’re dedicated to the success of your business, it shows your peers that you care about their existence.
On the flip side of being confident is humility. While it is essential to have confidence in your decisions, you must also be humble enough to know when you don’t know. It will allow you to put yourself in the shoes of those under you in the organizational hierarchy and will show that you are willing to roll up your sleeves and get to work when necessary.
Humility builds trust with your peers. To develop your humility, start by asking “how can I help?” rather than, “how can this help me?”
Be Willing to Coach and Mentor
The ultimate task for leaders is not to create followers, but to create more leaders. Show your people that you want them to have the same opportunities as you. Be willing to coach and mentor them, rather than focusing on the orders you give. Make time for them if you can or offer different forms of coaching, personal, and professional development opportunities they can use to grow.
Take the time to learn about your people. What are their values? What are their goals? Identifying these will help you identify their motivators and help you tailor their experience in the workplace to meet them. People are more motivated when they think someone cares where they end up.
Practice these skills to build your strengths if you are trying to become a leader. If you are in a leadership position, advocate for your people so that they may have the same opportunities as you.
Ashley Lipman is a super-connector who helps businesses find their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. She frequently writes about the latest advancements in digital marketing and focuses her efforts on developing customized blogger outreach plans depending on the industry and competition.