In today’s business environment, being a great leader takes a diverse set of skills and a lot of practice. The world around us is changing every day. This means leaders can no longer rely solely on their technical skills and know-how; they must be flexible and have the ability to do so much more.
The Qualities of a Leader
A leader today must be able to motivate and engage a diverse workforce. We currently have three generations in the workforce—Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Generation Y—and all have preferred modes of communication. Successfully leading others requires that you communicate effectively using a variety of methods. It also means providing the appropriate level of feedback and being able to inspire and motivate all team members, regardless of their generation, background, personality, or level of experience. Team members must feel connected to the business and clearly understand the vital role they play in the company’s overall success.
Expanding your influence as a leader begins with awareness. You must be able to explore your own personal strengths and weaknesses and identify areas for improvement. Think about your emotional reactions to stress, change, and conflict. The emotions that you display will have a direct impact on your team and their overall effectiveness. Being keenly self-aware allows you to modify your behavior so its effect on the business is positive.
Leaders must also display confidence without being arrogant. Humble leaders are able to focus on leading the team and getting the job done while sharing the spotlight and credit for success with others. Humility is not a weakness. Humble leaders are approachable and allow team members to develop their own talents and contribute to the organization in innovative ways without fear.
The ever-changing business environment also requires leaders to be courageous. Leaders who can confront complex challenges head-on will be more likely to reap the rewards of taking smart risks. They have the courage to speak up and step out of their comfort zones to achieve the results the organization needs. As a leader, being courageous also means being honest and having tough conversations with others when needed.
The best leaders exhibit curiosity. They ask questions and are interested in exploring new ideas. They have an ongoing desire to learn. They are committed to self-development and willing to try new approaches to leading others and performing their work.
Great leaders also care about the people around them. They recognize people as their most important asset and demonstrate respect, appreciation, and compassion for the members of their team. They ensure that the work environment is safe and know their success is dependent on the people they lead. When leaders possess these attributes and demonstrate that they care about the people around them, they are able to build high-performing teams that achieve extraordinary results.
Developing exceptional leadership skills is an ongoing process. It’s important to remember to be patient with yourself as you grow. CMOE has helped leaders across the globe build self-awareness and discover their own strengths and development areas through a variety of coaching and training methods. Commitment to self-development, persistence, and practice will result in positive change, both for you and for the business. Contact CMOE to learn more about how we can help you become a stronger leader today.