If you hold any sort of leadership role in your company, you play an integral role in its success. How you lead will determine its success in every respect, whether it be finding solutions to problems, creation of innovative new products and services, or the breeding of successful, happy employees that will take an active role in making the company better. While there may be some innate qualities that lend themselves to being a successful leader, such as a high level of intelligence, this is not something that you either have or you don’t. Leaders can be molded. Here are some tips to do just that.
No matter how much you learn over the years about being a good leader, there is always something new to be learned. No matter how great you are, you can be greater. You are human and probably have some flaws that may interfere with leading as effectively as you could. Never stop learning how to be a better leader. Never stop learning about how to run a successful business. Never stop learning how to become a better person. Education and personal development are always priorities of successful leaders. Read books, attend seminars, get some DVDs—get your hands on whatever you can to help you become better. Become obsessed with gathering as much information as possible.
Anyone who has achieved a modicum of success probably has a few heroes who inspired them to do what they are doing today. Who are your heroes? Why do you admire them? What traits of theirs do you hope to develop and strengthen within yourself? What made them so successful? What are their philosophies on success, not just in work, but in other areas of life as well?
I had read somewhere once that one key element of being a good leader is finding smart, talented people and getting out of their way. While it is natural to want to know what is going on with your employees, and making sure everything is on the right track, the best leaders don’t micromanage. They hire the people they know are best for those jobs and trust they will do them well. Provide guidance as it is truly needed, but don’t enact any parameters that are unnecessary.
If you see success with doing something a certain way, it makes sense to repeat to ensure success in the new endeavor. But, be careful of getting too rigid, and only considering what you know has worked in the past. Depending on the nature of the current decision, this may not be the best tack. Sure, that strategy may work, but if there is a possibility that something else may work even better, make sure you explore it.
If you want people to do their best work, and if you want to keep your good employees around as long as possible, make sure you are showing true appreciation. While verbal acknowledgements are great, they may begin to sound empty after awhile if that is the only thing your workers are getting for a job well-done. Back up the words with promotions, raises and other tangibles.
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