If you have ever wondered how to be a better leader at work: this article is for you.
An important part of success in life is the capacity to lead. It is essential to be willing to lead ourselves. No one succeeds in life by simply following others. Sometimes we really must take a bold new path for ourselves.
Being a good leader is more than simply being in front of individuals. A leader must act. Too often, we essentially accept that somebody looks or sounds like a leader and too barely do we in fact see the actions that leader takes — and that is the true test of leadership.
However, in order to be a good leader ourselves, we need to focus on decisions rather than basic appearances. The title of this article makes reference to several ways, but do not take this as a progressive step as so many recipes or how-to books describe it. Instead, think of it as an action that you must do regularly.
How To Become A Better Leader At Work:
First, be wary of new potential. “Reality” is not absolute but subject to continuous change. Think of inventors, explorers, and agents of social change who have achieved greatness.
Many might just say that certain people are successful because they were lucky to be in the right place at the right time. Maybe so, but if their eyes weren’t opened to the opportunity, then it would not matter if they were in the right place.
Second, accept inspiration from wherever it comes; even your opponents. The wisest leaders continually scrutinize their competition. In war, politics, and business, we consistently see examples of this research and reconnaissance. Too often through certain research, many focus on finding weaknesses to exploit.
If you want to be a positive change leader, do not fall victim to this trend. On the other hand, if you find a weakness, make sure to avoid the trap yourself. If you find strengths then find ways to strengthen your own qualities to match.
Third, learn something new and promote it in a new way every day. This means you must consistently seek to broaden your horizons, internally and externally. Feed your brain with new lessons and knowledge, but also keep expanding your social horizons.
Search and meet new people and immerse yourself in new social environments. You never know when this new experience will help you in your leadership role.
Fourth, seek and find answers in subtle hints. Look beneath the surface and keep asking questions. This is an extension of step three where you seek new knowledge. But this also means that you must get out of the way of conventional knowledge.
Don’t just read books in the literary canon or bestseller lists. Take seminars rather than classes because there’s more room to ask questions and debate. Look for unconventional thinkers, teachers and writers.
Fifth, improvise if there isn’t any solution that can be obtained. No reason. Necessity is the mother of invention. How do you know it will not work if you have never tried it before?
Remember, not all approaches must come from the front. Look at your problem from all sides and systematically try different solutions in diverse combinations.
Six, make at least one person you care about happy every day. If you resolve to consider and look after one person each day, soon this caring and caring behavior will turn into a habit and the habit will spread to others around you.
Making other people happy also adds to your own happiness. Imagine how great the world would be if we all did a little more to spread happiness.
Seven, offer to help, even if there isn’t any visible benefit to you. This means more than simply writing a check. It means giving your time and energy and yourself. Sometimes that means helping someone you do not know and sometimes it can be a really individual act.
If you follow these action steps, you won’t only become a better leader but also set yourself up for a more successful life.
A good leader knows the colours of his team
Leadership can be quite a demanding job. As leaders we do not at all times get to choose who is on our team.
In fact normally a leader inherits a team, where most of the members have been there a lot longer than the leader, and may even know more about the job than the leader.
Whatever the scenario, one of the duties of a leader is to inspire the team to work together towards a common goal. This can be a daunting challenge. So generally teams are made up of very diversified members, each with their own strengths, weaknesses, and work style.
Team dynamics are also normally complicated by internal disagreements and private conflicts. Leaders, not only work with this group of individuals, but even have to accomplish the results anticipated by their superiors.
Leaders can greatly benefit from having the ability to identify the personality type types of team members. By understanding the underlying persona types, leaders can use individual members’ strengths for the nice of the team, in addition to assign tasks that team members naturally have.
A leader can even learn to communicate in a motivating way, taking into consideration the needs, values and work tastes of various team members.
A good leader will see the greatest results by working and capitalizing on the strengths and work style traits of the personas in the team. By properly positioning the strengths of individual members and compensating for weaknesses, leaders can bring the team into a productive balance and calm.
A brief overview of the values and work styles of the four main persona types shows the importance of this knowledge being part of a successful leadership toolbox.
The four persona types will be described using the colours Gold, Blue, Green and Orange.
Strong Gold employees take their jobs and responsibilities very seriously. The golden persona wants to contribute, be part of a team, and achieve success and productive. They respond well to recognition, rewards, and incentives.
However, Gold team members need well defined obligations and structures, firm expectations and timelines and reassurance by authorities that they’re on the right track.
A robust Blue Persona requires an open social atmosphere to work well. Relationships are very important to them, and they need the freedom to be capable to build relationships with co-workers, customers and employers.
Conflict and intense competition hurts the mighty Blue, but they will thrive in a positive, creative and service-oriented atmosphere.
A robust Green Persona is documented more for expertise than people skills. They are excellent at working with facts, data, research, and analytical projects. Greens shine in their ability to design, understand complex systems and methods.
Facts are very important to Greens, but they’ve a weakness for routine follow-up and are somewhat insensitive in social interactions.
The orange team members are visible by their energy, skill and creativity. The key factor for an Orange is the freedom to be capable to use their skills and talents. If the structure is too much, or the leader is quite authoritarian, the orange persona feels blocked and does not function well.
The orange persona loves people and works well in a teamwork spirit (1), competition and friendship. However, they’re action-oriented and become impatient with prolonged talks and detailed administrative tasks.
A leader, knowing the colours of his team, can use this knowledge to blend team members into a cohesive, well-coordinated image that’s poised for achievement.
By facilitating each team member to function in their natural area of strength and motivating them by communicating in a way that inspires calm and teamwork, leaders are on course to accomplish extraordinary results.
Key Elements in Public Speaking – Time Lag
Timing is essential when speaking in public. Cliché: It’s not so much what you say as it’s how you say it that goes a lot with public speaking.
Where you place your pauses during your presentation is among the most significant aspects of keeping your audience sleep-free. Couple this with humor and you are set.
Timing is a component involved in spontaneous reactions particularly in developments through your unexpectedly anticipated deliveries.
However, do not forget that anytime you expect to burst out laughing anytime soon, avoid speaking with your voice and anything you say will likely be drowned out by the noise of the crowd.
Be sure to remember that laughter is very hard to come by and very easy to stop. Try as much as possible to maintain eye contact with the audience a little longer every time you deliver the punch line.
Audience size can even affect how you use timings. If the audience is small, your presentation will likely be delivered in less time than if you have a large audience.
The reaction of a large audience will be a little longer and not as fast as if the audience is small. You even have to wait for the visible ripple effect of your funny lines to reach the audience in the back row.
Believe it or not, instituting much-needed silence in your presentation is among the hallmarks of a good, skilled presenter. No public speaker should ramble on and on in hopes of keeping the audience hooked on whatever you must say.
Ironically, this is an efficient way to distract them from you. Using silence adds much needed polish to your presentation making you come across as a confident expert.
Short pauses are effective for letting you separate your thoughts. This pause lasts from half a second to two seconds. You do not have to truly count, just remember to slow down. This gives the audience an opportunity to absorb everything you must say.
It also helps if you change your pitch during the end of the thought as this can even signal to the audience that another thought is coming.
Pausing is also an efficient way to go if you want to highlight something. Put in front of whatever word or thought you want your audience to focus on, they’re sure to get it.
An efficient public speaker must be capable to use devices that capture the audience’s focus. One efficient way for them to provide you with some much-needed interest is this: get them on stage. Get them to take part.
When someone is on stage and she or he happens to be in the audience, the others virtually at all times stay tuned. Why? Because they want to see what you’ll do to one of them.
Besides, because they think they can get above themselves and to save their precious ego from embarrassment, they need to at least know what is going on.
Regardless of how good or outstanding you are as a presenter or as a public speaker, nothing beats the joy of getting someone on a stage where they should not be in the first place.
What goes through their minds the moment you pull an unsuspecting person out of their complacency is, “Oh my God, what if the speaker chooses me to go there next? What am I going to do?” Then later, “I have to pay attention to this.”
Moments later as you deliver your presentation, your audience will likely be thinking, “What point did he make?” And then when you make your point, the audience thinks, “Now I get it.”
Just because you keep them focused, you have forced them to listen and reply to your statements in the privacy of their minds.
That said, there are those who are very shy and quite sensitive from the audience who might withdraw from the rest of your presentation if they hear you are about to call them on stage. The goal is generally to gain an audience and not lose any of them.
Make it clear before you ask someone to go on stage with you that you’re asking for volunteers and nobody will be forced if they do not want to. Note that if the majority of your audience is shy, once you finally get someone on stage they will virtually at all times heave a sigh of relief because you literally feel the breeze waft past you.
Another way to get your audience engaged and focused is to give them proper acknowledgment. Try rewarding one member of the audience for a particular accomplishment or moment in a good performance, or as an added bonus, reward a group of viewers.
A Leader Must Be Willing To Take On Obligations
Who will forget grandfather Peter Parker’s famous line, “With
extraordinary power comes with extraordinary obligations. Society expects Spiderman, the comic book, television, and film superhero, to be responsible for saving his city, or even the world, in some cases, from evil because he has superpowers.
Out of all the episodes he appeared in, he never let us down. With the power at her disposal, she makes sure to responsibly use it for the nice of those round her.
Leadership is no different from being a superhero. Yes, you may not have superpowers like Superman and Spiderman, but you do have the authority to lead others to success. It’s far better and stronger because it is a power that real people can utilize in this real world.
Therefore, being a leader requires an incredible sense of duty, the second quality that a successful leader must acquire.
The power to lead your people towards your vision comes with obligations such as keeping them in the right direction, recognizing each and everybody’s duties and faults, and getting them back on course when they stray.
Who said being a leader was easy? Well, no… It comes with quite a lot of work. True leaders are willing to accept all of them.
There are times when it sometimes makes us feel better to blame someone or something else when something goes wrong at work. However, this shouldn’t be done, particularly by a good leader!
A leader must take full responsibility for a job – not only before she or he accepts to accept it, but also after the job is finished. As much as he’s responsible for the success of his team, he must even be responsible for any failures. He represents the entire team so whatever happens to him, he’s the one responsible.
Making excuses and blaming (2) something or someone else for a job that fails is not a quality of a good leader. Instead, all he had to do was accept the proven fact that something was wrong with the organization, even if it wasn’t his fault.
It’s normal to make mistakes. In fact, mistakes are opportunities to learn something bigger. As a leader, he must make sure that the team members learn from these mistakes and these mistakes aren’t repeated in the future.
You may not have complete control over other people and aren’t expected to have complete control over their decisions, but you do have complete control over your own reactions. Knowing what to do in unforeseen and unpredictable scenarios will hold you accountable, thereby providing you with a feeling of power.
Act on Multiple Facts
Making any decision without having all the data and facts beforehand can be very challenging. I was talking to a young man recently and he told me that many of his professors had changed the rules about him in the administration of his classes.
The syllabus of some of its classes has been changed, which is
change the test date. He is also notified of this change after the semester grace period.
The grace period in which he could get his tuition money back after dropping out of college had passed. Just because of that change, he would have two to three exams in one day.
I agreed with him that it was not a fair thing for them to do and that he was not given all the facts to be capable to make an sufficient decision. This young man must make the decision to take the course in an altered manner or cancel the course, lose his tuition and postpone an extra semester until graduation.
It’s interesting because I was about the same age as this young man when one of my undergraduate professors told me that you would not have 100% of the facts needed to make a decision in the real world.
He tells the class that if we’re lucky, we might have 50% of the facts to be capable to make up our minds. I had told this young man what my marketing professor had said and he thanked me for this advice.
A few months later, I believed about probably the most drastic decisions a person in the 20th century had to make without having all the facts before him.
Harry Truman became US president in April 1945 after Franklin Roosevelt died. Roosevelt never told Truman about the Manhattan Project. Suddenly, Truman had access to three atomic bombs and the authority to use them in World War II against Japan.
And you think making some decisions can be challenging? Truman had the destiny of history in his hands as he contemplated what to do.
The bottom line is that Truman, like many other decision makers, was faced with very limited information and had to make decisions and act on them quickly.
At some point in our lives, this happens to all of us. But even if you do not choose to do something, your indecision is your decision. Not determining means determining.
So how do you make a decision when you do not have all the facts?
Follow this procedure:
1. Review the facts you have.
Truman had access to three atomic bombs. Each bomb has enough power to destroy a complete city.
2. Analyze your facts.
Truman witnessed the testing of one of the atomic bombs in the desert and have become more aware of the bomb’s true intensity.
3. Analyze how your facts will influence your future decisions.
Truman was given an estimate of the number of American troops who might have died in the extra major engagements with the Japanese. Truman’s choice was that the atomic bomb could be used rather than attacking Japanese cities and would avoid extreme American casualties.
4. Take action.
Truman ordered that the remaining two atomic bombs be used against the Japanese on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Using both bombs in combat finally ended World War II more quickly and prevented additional American casualties.
Great decision makers, like Truman, act when necessary and take full responsibility for their actions. Although the outcome may or may not be what Truman had planned, a decision was made.
If Truman didn’t make a decision, the war would continue and plenty of more American lives would be lost. While the decision may not have been the favored one at the time, Truman knew it had to be made.
None of us own a crystal ball and have access to info and upcoming events. Truman was no different. Even although we do not know the exact outcome of a decision, we can consciously take action and make a decision.
If we do not decide, someone or something will decide for us. We determine by decision or hesitation. Which one will you choose?
Are You a Leader or a Lazy One?
Do you claim to be a Leader in your business or area of expertise?
I have observed that many people claim to be Leaders, but I instead consider them Lazy. A lazy person is someone who loves to give instructions or directions by nature, but takes no action to advance themselves or their business.
Does this describe you, your up-line, or anyone else on your Mastermind Team?
Just remember, that a leader has to lead and nurture others through growth procedures. If he lost his integrity and failed to take action, then this same failure mindset would affect his teammates. A team will duplicate their leader and their leader’s actions.
Let me ask you one last time… Are you a Leader or a Slacker?