There’s a growing trend taking place within organizations when it comes to giving individuals leadership responsibilities and it’s exciting! Whether someone is tapped to lead an organization, a department/division or a team, these people are actually provided with training … training specifically geared toward the skills that will enable them to be successful in their leadership role. That more organizations are recognizing the need to and value of doing this attests to the importance of enhancing the success of the leader’s effort with such training.
Michele Tenzyk of The Tenth Group penned an article that summarized some of the key skills or methods of
operating in one’s role as a leader that hit upon some of the most meaningful ones that will serve both the individual and the group they lead very well. She drew upon the writing of Glenn Llopis that appeared in Forbes several years ago. Here are things done on a daily basis:
- Make Others Feel Safe to Speak-Up
Rather than using the position of leader to be the key focus of all others they lead, this leader demonstrates expertise in making others feel safe to speak-up with confidence thus enabling them to share their views and perspectives. This leader uses their executive presence to create an approachable environment.
- Communicate Expectations
Successful leaders are great communicators, and this is especially true when it comes to “performance expectations.” In doing so, they remind their colleagues of the organization’s core values and mission statement – ensuring that their vision is properly translated and actionable objectives are properly executed.
- Challenge People to Think
The most successful leaders understand their colleagues’ mindsets, capabilities and areas for improvement. They use this knowledge/insight to challenge their teams to think and stretch them to reach for more. These types of leaders excel in keeping their people on their toes, never allowing them to get comfortable and enabling them with the tools to grow. If you are not thinking, you’re not learning new things. If you’re not learning, you’re not growing – and over time becoming irrelevant in your work.
- Provide Continuous Feedback
Employees want their leaders to know that they are paying attention to them and they appreciate any insights along the way. Successful leaders always provide feedback and they welcome reciprocal feedback by creating trustworthy relationships with their colleagues.. They understand the power of perspective and have learned the importance of feedback early on in their career as it has served them to enable workplace advancement.
- Invest in Relationships
Successful leaders don’t focus on protecting their domain – instead they expand it by investing in mutually beneficial relationships. Successful leaders associate themselves with “lifters and other leaders” – the types of people that can broaden their sphere of influence. Not only for their own advancement, but that of others. Leaders share the harvest of their success to help build momentum for those around them.
Of course the most successful leaders demonstrate many skills that contribute to their success. Having focus, integrity, empathy, respect, innovation as well as being humble, creative and possessed of an ongoing drive for learning are certainly some. Yet, those outlined above convey a confident leader that makes others want to follow and with whom others want to be associated. If you are a leader today and regardless of whether or not your organization has provided specific training around your leadership responsibility you can take steps to incorporate the itemized skills on a daily basis and significantly grow the level of your success as leader.