15 Ways to Improve Your Leadership Skills
In all successful companies lies a team of hard workers and a great leader. Whether you're starting your own business, have recently been promoted, or just need some advice on how to get the most out of your staff , we've got 15 tips from Instant Offices to help you become a more effective leader.
1. Have a Clear Vision
You need to have a clear vision that is well communicated to your team, if you are all on the same page and working towards the same goal you're already on the path to success.
2. Show You’re Passionate
Showing your passion and enthusiasm in your work will boost morale and make your team just as excited as you are. A team who is excited about what they are doing will work harder and increase productivity.
3. Walk the Walk
Don't just talk the talk... lead by example and don't be afraid to get stuck in to the gritty or mundate tasks. If your team sees that you are willing to work hard, then they too will emulate your behaviour.
4. Make Concrete Plans
Your team needs clear direction if they're going to achieve the goal. Make a solid plan with a realistic time frame that clearly maps out your objective.
5. Remember that it’s not about you
You are only as strong as your team, you need to build them up and motivate them to work with you towards your company's goals.
6. Stay Positive
You need to understand that your mood affects your team, if something goes wrong you need to stay positive. As soon as you become negative, your employees will feel your energy and follow suit. By staying calm and positive in situations where that seems like the hardest thing to do, you will reassure your team and push through the difficult times together.
7. Improve Your Communication Skills
Communication is key and it certainly is a two-way street. Whilst being able to communicate your vision clearly is a necessary skill, your staff will appreciate it when you listen to them as well; whether it be complaints or new ideas, showing them that you value their opinion will go a long way.
8. Admit Your Weaknesses
Everyone makes mistakes and has weaknesses, but it takes a good leader to use them to their advantage. Once you have identified your weaknesses utilise your team around you to solve problems, strong companies form when a team plays on each others strengths and weaknesses.
9. Keep on Learning
Always strive to learn more, your professional world is constantly changing so you should adapt to grow with it. There's always something that you can improve on or learn about within your industry, stay ahead of the game and develop as a leader.
10. Think Critically
Being a critical thinker is essential to becoming a good leader. Analysing your tasks and projects will enable you to identify any potential problems, allowing you the chance to solve them before they snowball out of control.
11. Handle Conflicts with Grace
In any job you're going to have to deal with conflicts, but it’s how you deal with them that will set you apart as a leader. If there’s a problem then deal with it immediately and get straight to the point, if someone isn’t performing as well as they should or perhaps there are issues between two team members, then you need to step up and address the problems in private. Listen to their side before you jump to conclusions and communicate how you're going to overcome the situation. Your employees will appreciate you taking the time out to talk to them and this will usually diffuse the conflicts before they have time to get out of control.
12. Learn How to Delegate
The best leaders understand their workforce and play on their strengths. You need to understand how you can manage your team to ensure they work effectively and get the task done. Allow your team to prove their worth, you believed in them enough to hire them in the first place so let them get on with it! Not only will it give them more confidence in their job, it will also free up some of your time allowing you to concentrate on more important tasks.
13. Encourage Creativity and Contributions
Your team might have some fantastic ideas but if they don’t feel comfortable enough to share them you are not utilising them to their full potential. Encourage your team to express their thoughts whether talking to you directly, in a group situation or perhaps even in a suggestion box. You can bounce ideas off each other and challenge your usual ethos, doing this will make your workers feel more confident in their roles and may lead to exciting ideas.
14. Give Rewards and Recognition
The best way to make your workers feel appreciated and keep them motivated is to recognise their hard work and duly reward them. One of the biggest reasons why individuals leave companies is because they feel under appreciated. Take some time out to reward the success of the team, whether it be a trip away, vouchers, or just a public thank you for your efforts.
15. Discover Your Leadership Style
No two leaders are the same; take some time out to understand what works best for you and the people around you.