All organizations and industries work under the guidance of a leader who regulates the system. From delegating tasks, handling operations, to keep a check on everything – leaders show the way. Some follow an autocratic approach where the focus is on getting jobs done, while others believe having a democratic workspace.
Do you see yourself as a leader? Every person craves an authoritative position to enjoy control and autonomy. However, becoming a leader is no easy feat since leadership is not a title; it is more of an example and action. These are influential and powerful people who shape our nation, societies, and organizations. A successful leader is always on a revolutionary mission with knowledge of how to turn dreams into reality.
Everyone is quick to judge a bad leader, but do you know what makes a good leader? Here are seven top leadership skills that make a great leader.
1. Learning Agility
People usually think they have reached the stage of self-actualization after becoming a leader. No matter how far you have climbed on the professional ladder – the truth is, you never stop learning. Leaders possess learning agility, the ability to adapt to changing situations. Alongside educational qualifications, they seek to learn from unusual experiences and apply them to succeed in other circumstances. Anybody can foster learning agility through practice, experience, and education. If you want to give it a shot, begin with an online masters in a leadership program, and explore what qualities make an effective leader.
In today’s world, you can find all kinds of leaders. Surprisingly, expressing gratitude can make you a better leader as it elevates self-esteem. Successful leaders have a habit of saying ‘thank you’ for every little gesture. If an employee meets a deadline, you can say ‘good effort’ or when someone is working tirelessly for a project, don’t mind praising them. It works as a morale booster, and many employees are willing to work hard for an appreciative boss.
3. Powerful Communication
Are you an introvert? If you are unable to put your vision across and explain the strategy, it is quite challenging to achieve the goals. Thus, leaders have to be effective communicators. They should have control over words, jargon, and grammar, which means they can readily create a collaborative working space. Similarly, they use the power of words to motivate people and make them do the unthinkable.
Most importantly, competent leaders can communicate in various ways, with a range of employees across different roles and identities. After all, the communication style has to vary when talking to a domestic worker than discussing projects with employees.
4. Commitment & Passion
Successful leaders are confident and show commitment to their work. It is impossible that a leader backs off in the middle of a project or challenging deadline. They would put in every effort to make things work. Hence, when employees see leaders getting their hands dirty, it encourages them to give the best shot. At the same time, this passion and commitment help leaders gain respect, while infusing new energy in the team members. It keeps the subordinates motivated and, at times, develops the same enthusiasm as the leader.
5. Ability to Delegate
One part of being an excellent leader is understanding your employee’s strengths and weaknesses. They know how to delegate tasks by identifying who is best suited for a particular job. Instead of imposing things, they explain protocols and provide all the necessary instructions. Great leaders understand the importance of resources and provide you sufficient training. Moreover, the constant feedback will help employees do better. The entire delegation process empowers the team, establishes trust, and supports professional development.
If the boss indulges in unlawful practices and makes unfair decisions, employees will undoubtedly follow the same footsteps. Leaders act as role models, spreading the message of positivity, dedication, and hard work. Instead of indulging in unethical practices, they have to demonstrate integrity. It involves adhering to the company’s policies and using the resources appropriately. They have to be honest and show respect to every employee. After all, their behavior reflects their reputation and the credibility of the organization.
7. Emotional Intelligence
Leaders encounter overwhelming situations every day. Some days are challenging, and others are emotionally depressing. Effective leaders never let emotions influence their decision since they know to control them. Moreover, emotionally intelligent leaders can empathize and understand the situation. If some employee is going through a rough patch, leaders will support him as they care about others. Likewise, this quality also helps with conflict resolution, as this allows leaders to make fair decisions.
Even though leaders are ordinary people like us, but they demonstrate exclusive skills and a caliber beyond our imagination. Alongside sufficient experience in the industry, they are incredibly knowledgeable. Pick a topic – economics, business, politics, and they would be well-versed with every trend. Likewise, they have a knack of organizational practices, work norms, and social ethics. If you wish to join this elite club of leaders, start brushing up on your skills.