HBS professor Joe Badaracco agrees that the traditional manager versus leader argument (“Clark Kent versus Superman,” he jokes) tends to undermine the value of management. “There are lots of people who look and act like managers, who have excellent managerial skills, and who don’t make a lot of noise. Nobody is writing cover stories about them. But after they have been in an organization for a period of time, things are significantly better,” observes Badaracco. “Now, are these mere managers because we can’t compare them with Martin Luther King? Or are they leaders because they accomplished something that needed to be done?”
Communication may be the single most important skill of a manager. After all, all the others depend on it. You can’t be a leader if you can’t communicate your vision. You can’t motivate people if they can’t understand what you want. Communication skills can be improved through practice. Here are two exercises you can use to improve your ability to communicate effectively.
Becoming a prosperous, accomplished person means pursuing your personal goals with tenacity. Build upon your small successes, each and every day. Visualize the next step you need to take that will bring you closer to your goals.
Discover what your talents are, develop them, and focus on applying them towards making a difference. What problems would your talents be best suited for? Think of problems in the broader sense – they’re not always easy to define.
Be educated. Education gives you the knowledge, skills, and credibility to achieve your maximum potential. In terms of financial success, statistics have shown that the more education you have (i.e. the higher degree you achieve), the more money you are likely to make.
Strong leaders have the power to engage others, motivate their team and make their passions ours. They are visionaries that inspire action to achieve the business mission. Strong leadership is vital to employee engagement and business success!
The “how to be a better leader” test: When was the last time you praised an employee? If it wasn’t this week, you may be a boss. Taking time to praise an employee for a job well-done may help you become a better leader.
Means treat all people and all problems, according to the principles of Reason. Treat everyone reasonably. If you don’t treat people reasonably then, you will be treating them unreasonably. And nobody will, for very long, follow a person who treats them unreasonably.
Once you have your leadership successes listed based on concrete examples, you should address your personal motivation. What motivates you in your desire to be a leader? Have you realized your avid interest in staff development during your supervisor’s last sick leave? Do you already have some good ideas that you would like to implement – perhaps a new approach to employee motivations? Make it clear that you are willing to take responsibilities and indicate your desire to positively influence the corporate culture. Show that you are one hundred percent behind your decision. If you explain your motivation authentically and provide compelling examples of how you have used your leadership skills successfully, you will have no trouble to confidently answer the question, “Why do you want to be a leader?”
What is the cost of ineffective leadership within your organization? How many good employees have left your company because of poor leaders? What is your company’s reputation as an employer worth? How many people are passing up your recruitment efforts because of what they’ve heard about your company’s leadership? Are less-than-ideal leadership skills to blame for lack of engagement, lagging motivation, or even the company’s bottom line? Not building the best possible leaders may already be costing you a great deal.
Integrity is the integration of outward actions and inner values. A person of integrity is the same on the outside and on the Such an individual can be trusted because he or she never veers from inner values, even when it might be expeditious to do so. A leader must have the trust of followers and therefore must display integrity.
Jack is a representative of the savage instincts that emerge from the boys. He is physically stronger, more intimidating. He lusts for power and uses the boys to feed his desire for power. Ultimately, Ralph becomes subordinate to Jack, almost falling into his savagery, but resists. Jack is also a natural leader, he proposes that the boys call him chief.
Here’s an example story of poor leadership: An airline’s forks kept disappearing and no one knew why. After an investigation, it was discovered the dishwashers were throwing them away because they had trouble with adequately cleaning them and they were scared of punishment if they returned dirty forks (and would thusly be reprimanded). If you’re too dictatorial, your team will throw away your forks. Better management would have prevented this problem. So be kind and keep your entire cutlery.
Don’t do everything yourself. Great leaders, such as Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Virgin mogul Richard Branson, surround themselves with talented individuals who can offer their own solutions. Set the vision and determine the goals, but trust people to make it happen. Tolerance is good; indecisiveness is bad. Communicate the vision for the future and if things need changing, tell people and involve them in making the changes. Show your confidence by letting them participate in the design of a new strategy. If the team is too cautious in their approach to change, give them one more chance but with greater clarity.
Some theorists started to synthesize the trait and situational approaches. Building upon the research of Lewin et al., academics began to normalize the descriptive models of leadership climates, defining three leadership styles and identifying which situations each style works better in. The authoritarian leadership style, for example, is approved in periods of crisis but fails to win the “hearts and minds” of followers in day-to-day management; the democratic leadership style is more adequate in situations that require consensus building; finally, the laissez-faire leadership style is appreciated for the degree of freedom it provides, but as the leaders do not “take charge”, they can be perceived as a failure in protracted or thorny organizational problems. Thus, theorists defined the style of leadership as contingent to the situation, which is sometimes classified as contingency theory. Four contingency leadership theories appear more prominently in recent years: Fiedler contingency model, Vroom-Yetton decision model, the path-goal theory, and the Hersey-Blanchard situational theory.
Praise is powerful stuff, especially when it comes from leaders! That’s why 52% of employees say their most memorable recognition comes from their managers. It’s vital to encourage managers to recognise their team’s efforts, in person or with powerful virtual rewards like praise badges. Remember, it’s not all about the big fanfares for outstanding achievements. 70% of employees say motivation and morale would improve ‘massively’ if managers simply said ‘thank you’ more often.
Jump up ^ Zaccaro, S. J., Gulick, L. M. V. & Khare, V. P. (2008). “Personality and leadership”. In C. J. Hoyt, G. R. Goethals & D. R. Forsyth (Eds.), Leadership at the crossroads (Vol 1) (pp. 13–29). Westport, Connecticut: Praeger.
Business growth involves taking risks that don’t always pan out. Be willing to stand up for your employees and their decisions when expectations aren’t met. This will motivate your employees to feel they can accomplish what’s needed to achieve the organization’s goals.
For example, if you want to succeed at integrating a healthier lifestyle into your everyday routine, that means you might have drag yourself out to the gym or out for a run when you really don’t feel like it. And in those moments, it won’t feel like you’re doing what you love.
Your teams looks up to you and if you want them to give them their all, you will have to be passionate about it too. When your teammates see you getting your hands dirty, they will also give their best shot. It will also help you to gain the respect of your subordinates and infuse new energy in your team members, which helps them to perform better. If they feel that you are not fully committed or lacks passion, then it would be an uphill task for the leader to motivate your followers to achieve the goal.
Reward your hard workers with prizes. A prize, whether it’s the latest technological gadget or just a pair of free movie tickets, can give your employees the incentive they need to work hard, and will make them think you’re a cool boss.