What is Good Leadership?
As we’ve said before, good leadership isn’t something that can be reduced to a series of condensed truisms. Although this is true, here are some qualities of good leadership that can form a starting point for you as a leader.
People aren’t mind readers. You need to be crystal, whether you’re instructing on a task, giving feedback, or teaching.
Nobody likes a fake. If you’re plastering on a smile when you’re internally fuming, people are going to pick up on it. Be diplomatic, but say it like it is, or you’ll have a big disconnect and a lack of respect that could be fatal to your relationship with your staff.
If people don’t understand the ‘why’ behind your instructions, direction, attitude, or actions, they can’t buy in and get enthusiastic. Explaining yourself doesn’t make you weak – it makes you confident enough to open your ideas up to others.
No-one wants to stand still. Fail to develop your staff, and you will lose them. This can be investing time in sharing your experience, technical training, experiencing new situations or challenges, or giving staff the opportunity to work their way up within the business through a structured staff development pathway.
Ask a lot, give a lot
Don’t settle for anything but their best. But be 110% committed yourself – be the first one to meetings, give respect and care, and invest in your employees in the same way that you’d like them to invest in the business. It’s a two-way street.
Being yourself at work is crucial to really connect with your employees (and your members). But getting emotionally overinvested and losing your rag/crying over spilt milk/getting too close to a situation is going to compromise your position.
Don’t say one thing and do another. People will soon lose patience with your hypocrisy and bail. Instead, have a clear idea about how you want your staff to behave – and show them how it’s done.
Be bold and confident
OK, sometimes we have to fake this to make it – and you don’t have to be over-the-top if that’s not your character. But being self-assured and being prepared to take calculated risks are a big plus.
Give respect, earn respect
Learn from mistakes
Don’t be a chimp, doing the same things repeatedly and expecting the same results. If you mess up, put your hands up and do it better next time. Being the big “I am” and sticking to your guns through sheer stubbornness is going to earn you nothing but contempt.