As a leader, you can never get to a place where you think we have mastered all leadership skills. There is always room for improvement. In this guest post by Matthew Beamont, highlights some of the basic leadership skills we so often neglect.
Stepping into a leadership role is often a very attractive prospect for most people. However filling a leadership role is just as often much more stressful and difficult than many realize. It requires a certain skill set to lead people effectively.
In fact, these leadership skills are so valued that many business and public administration graduate school programs have incorporated basic leadership courses as part of their requirements.
For you to become good at leadership it is necessary to cultivate the following 6 skills.
A Good Leader Communicate Effectively
You are communicating with many people in many different ways on a daily basis. Above average communication skills are therefore essential for effective leadership. If you are not able to communicate clearly, your team members will most likely misunderstand your message. This can lead to confusion about roles, goals and outcomes, leading to problems further down the line.
A Good Leader is Able to Resolve Issues
Because you work with people it is inevitable to avoid conflict and issues within your team. It is your job to make sure all issues affecting the team are resolved. This could be something as simple as a lack of communication between certain team members. A more difficult, but important issue to resolve is when somebody is not pulling their weight. You are therefore responsible to make sure these issues are resolved in a timely. If not, it could affect overall productivity.
When the best leader's work is done the people say, "We did it ourselves." Lao Tzu
A Good Leader is Extremely Dedicated
Taking responsibility is one of the core elements of successful leadership. When things go wrong within the team, no matter who is at fault, you cannot pass the buck and plead ignorance to the situation. Ultimately, it is down to you. Of course, this requires extreme amounts of dedication on your part in order to ensure a situation like this does not arise.
A Good Leader Praise Where it is Due
It can sometimes be tempting to take all of the credit for successful projects. However, this is leadership suicide, causing people to lose trust in you. You must make sure credit is given where it is due, praising the whole team for their efforts.
A Good Leader is Assertive
Being assertive is, by far, one of the most important traits for successful leadership. However, there is a very fine line between assertiveness and aggressiveness. It is therefore important for you to find the balance. A good level of assertiveness will get results, whereas aggressiveness will ultimately lead to failure.
A Good Leader has a Sense of Humor
It is important for your team members to know they can approach you at any time. Being approachable is a quality all successful leaders possess. This is why a sense of humor is essential.
Good leaders make sure they are continuously learning. Leadership training will allow you to make sure you get the most out of your team, enhancing your leadership ability.