In every level in every organization, leadership is one of the most valuable skills you will need to succeed in your career. Whether you are interacting with your team members or meeting with a client, a strong set of leadership qualities is required to triumph over the obstacles set by your current situation.
This may appear as a disadvantage for some of us who think that they are lacking in the qualities that make up for a great leader. However, the fact of the matter is that these leadership qualities are not ingrained. No one was born a leader. Instead, everyone can learn to become a great leader given proper focus and time. You can learn the skills needed to acquire leadership qualities if you put your mind to it!
This article tackles all the things you will need to learn to become an outstanding leader.
Leadership qualities to strive for
The qualities that make up for a great leader can vary depending on the industry you are working in. However, there are certain qualities that set up the standard of being an outstanding leader. No matter what field or industry you are in, you will surely benefit from having the following leadership qualities.
To become an outstanding leader in a fast-paced and forever-evolving environment means you will need a good dose of adaptability. With targets and functions continually shifting, being flexible is a must in order to succeed. When you work together with a team of people, a lot of things may slip out of your control. The important thing is to not panic and instead be able to adapt to the changes and developments you are faced with. An outstanding leader is adaptable enough that they can adjust easily to the dynamics of their work.
2. Analytical and Problem-solving
It is a well-known fact that for us to succeed, we will first have to encounter hurdles and roadblocks and overcome them. There are no guaranteed shortcuts that can solve the adversities and hurdles we are faced with whether it is for our career or for our private life. After all, taking the seemingly shortest path often leads to more convoluted and longer roads.
So how do you substantially overcome these hurdles? It turns out, the answer is not so complicated. What you need to do is to cultivate and develop your analytical and problem-solving skills. With enough preparation and experience, you would have gained the necessary analytical and problem-solving skills needed to lead your team past obstacles. As you encounter more of these obstacles, your skills will be sharpened and you will find it easier to solve problems.
Leading a team means being able to manage and delegate tasks well. In order to this, you must have full confidence in your teammates. It means that you fully trust them to be able to complete the tasks that have been assigned to them. When you show full confidence and respect in your teammate’s capabilities to contribute to the success of the team, you will simultaneously gain their respect. This environment of mutual respect is what creates healthy working conditions and the positive morale of your team.
Being an outstanding leader requires you to have the courage to face difficult situations. Some of these situations may include correcting the behavior of your team members and yourself as well as making decisions with high stakes. From the seemingly smallest of instances to the bigger life-changing situations, you will need to tackle it with the audacity and courage fitting of a true leader.
5. Creativity and Innovation
When the American author, Earl Nightengale, said “everything begins with an idea”, he could never be any closer to the truth. With this, ideas carry with them immense value and they can mean the success or failure of a person or business. However, ideas alone cannot solve the problems of the world. That is why you need a good portion of creativity and innovation to transform these ideas into something worthwhile and even revolutionary. The best leaders are able to develop fascinating ideas as well as cultivate the ideas of others. These people, because of their high levels of creativity and innovation, can turn the world upside down with their ideas.
6. Effective Communication
An important aspect of working with a team is communication. To be able to work properly with your team, you will need to be able to communicate clearly and constructively. When you are able to effectively communicate, you are giving your team a clear path to meet the goals and targets set. With this, you will be able to save everyone more time and resources.
Because you are working with a group of people, as a leader, you must be able to understand where your team members are coming from. This means being attentive to their feelings and state of mind as well as having the empathy needed to grasp their situation. When you are working with a high level of empathy, you will come to understand better how the people around you work well. With this, you are better able to tune out your teammates and their environment and therefore create a more conducive work environment for them.
8. Humility and Respect
The most outstanding leaders are those that have a high sense of humility enough to be able to admit their own mistakes. When you lead your team with humility, you are showing your teammates that you respect them. By knowing this, your teammates will, in turn, treat you with respect.
9. Observant and Focused
Every team will need to have tasks and goals they would need to meet and achieve. When it comes to working on the set goals, it helps a lot to stay focused on the goal in front. Being focused leads to working more efficiently. However, focus alone is not enough, a team leader must also be observant of the details in the work. When you are aware of the details involved in the work, you get a clearer perspective of the bigger picture of the task. When you have both focus and observation, you will be able to effectively guide your team towards the completion of goals and the success of the work.
10. Passion and Tenacity
To be able to drive your team members towards working for a common goal and success, you will need to exhibit an infectious level of passion and tenacity. When you are able to influence your teammates to be as passionate as you are towards achieving your goal, the work becomes so much more painless and easier. After all, an extremely motivated and passionate team is closer to success than one that isn’t.
11. Strength and Resilience
It takes an immense amount of strength and resilience to be an outstanding leader. After all, being a leader means you will be faced with back-breaking challenges and burdens. The weak-willed and timid ones will not be able to survive a day in the life of an outstanding leader. When backed against a corner, outstanding leaders deal with their obstacles with strength and resilience enough to move mountains.
Bringing forward your leadership skills
Now that you have a feel of the 11 leadership qualities you need to strive for, what’s next is knowing how to develop these skills. What you need to prepare your self for is the fact that cultivating your leadership skills means spending a lot of time and practice. However, while you will need a lot of time and practice, being an outstanding leader is not at all impossible. To help get you started, here are some tips for bringing forward your leadership skills.
Establish your goals
To be able to continually improve your leadership skills, you will need to set up goals. Furthermore, when it comes to setting up goals it helps to make them specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based. This is known as the SMART criteria.
Get to know your style
When it comes to being an outstanding leader, it helps a lot to identify your leadership style. Of course, depending on the situation at hand, how you deal with it and your leadership style may vary. However, it is very helpful if you already have a grasp of your character as a leader so that in the long run you don’t lose it.
Identify your strengths and weaknesses
As with learning anything, it is important to understand what areas you have an aptitude for and what areas you still need to improve. It might become a hard task to critique your own self so asking for advice from a colleague or mentor will definitely help.
Learn from a mentor
If you are working on your own, you will definitely encounter a hurdle or problem that you don’t know the solution to. It will be very helpful to learn from a mentor who you admire to be a great leader.
After all that has been said in this article, the only thing left for you to do is to start honing your leadership skills. There is no better time than now when it comes to paving your way towards becoming an outstanding leader.