How do you define leadership? What makes a great leader?
According to our marketing partner, Preactive Marketing, the phrase “leadership is” has over 6 million global monthly searches. This indicates there is a growing interest in the topic and in learning to become a better leader.
So, how would you finish the phrase leadership is…
I would finish it something like this:
“Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.”
- Dwight Eisenhower
Thanks for the words of wisdom Ike. Leaders can’t lead without followers – or as I like to call them – implementers and doers. So, how does a leader get someone to do something because he/she wants it done?
- Transparency – Be transparent. People can usually tell when “something is up.” So before the rumors begin flying and productivity is impacted, communicatewith your employees. When making strategic decisions, determining organizational changes, or facing issues that impact employees, successful leaders need to be transparent with their workforce about how these matters arose, their thought process for dealing with them, and how their solutions may directly impact those they lead.
- Trust – Create a safe and trusting environment. Trust is a fundamental behavior for any relationship, both personal and professional. According to a study by the Hay Group, a global management consultancy, there are 75 key components of employee satisfaction (Lamb & McKee, 2009). They found that: Trust and confidence in top leadership was the single most reliable predictor of employee satisfaction in an organization. Trust must be earned. Leaders can earn employee trust by helping employees understand the company’s overall business strategy, informing them how they contribute to achieving key business goals, and sharing information with employees on both how the company is doing and how an employee’s own performance is relative to organizational objectives. It is much easier for employees to trust a leader that shows an interest in them.
- Self Awareness – Be self aware. Successful leaders have a heightened level of self-awareness, they have an understanding of themselves, their behaviors and actions, and how those behaviors and actions are interpreted by, and directly impact, employees. A good example of leadership self-awareness is exhibited in the U.S. Army’s leadership philosophy of “be, know, do.” Be proficient and competent, know yourself and your strengths and weaknesses, and do take responsibility and lead by example. Always be open to further growth and learning. Professional coaching is also a great well to help further develop leader self-awareness.
You see…leadership is a facet of business that is imperative to succeeding.
“The quality of leadership, more than any other single factor, determines the success or failure of an organization.”
- Fred Fiedler & Martin Chemers
So be a quality leader – one who people trust, respect, and want to follow!
If you’re looking for leadership training for yourself or for your organization – contact us by Friday, June 29th and mention this blog – we’ll take 15% off the offering that best fits your needs.