In this blog, we focus on something that we all get to deal with some day: leadership. Whether you are a leader yourself or an aspiring leader, leadership skills can come in handy at any point in life. Not only in your career, but also in your day-to-day.
What is leadership?
When typing the term “Leadership” in the Google search bar, you will find about 832,000,000 results. Despite this huge number, only defining what leadership is, is not enough. To really understand what is meant by leadership, one should shift the point of view inwards. It’s important to understand the strengths, attitudes and behaviours through which a true leader influences others.
Indeed, leadership is the art of motivating a group of people to act in search of a common goal. It is important for a leader to be able to inspire others and, above all, to be prepared to do so. Effective leadership is based on ideas, intuitions and evaluations that must be communicated to others in an engaging and convincing way. Through this, one facilitates and makes the work of their collaborators more effective. A leader should be a source of inspiration, a person combining a mix of personality and skills. Like this, a leader can make others follow them.
It’s a team effort
Leadership is a process of influence to help understand and accept the decisions and the action that must be taken. This enables individual and collective efforts to achieve common goals. Leadership is an organisational need and one of the most effective forms of social control, involving interpersonal influence, guiding people and assuming roles of responsibility.
Unlike authority and the function of the boss, the leader is the one who supports the other collaborators, is part of the team, and considers people and their ideas, instead of putting themselves above the co-workers.
The question remains: are leaders born or made? It is certain that some of us will already have some inherent characteristics of a leader, but leadership, even in our own small way, can be trained like any other skill.
How do I take the lead?
Here are some tips on how to take the lead. Be aware that being a leader is not the same for everyone, but it’s something depending on the context and the situation in which it is placed.
- It all starts with communication
Give and ask for feedback. As a leader, create constructive relationships and exercise the capacity of conflict management. Provide explanations and clarify roles and responsibilities by transmitting the right information
- Empower yourself and others
Motivate others through the act of sharing and the power of enthusiasm. Create a process of empowerment with your coworkers by demonstrating trust in their abilities.
- Empathy is at the basis of everything
Listen to learn: show genuine interest in those who work with you and encourage individualism, creativity and initiative. But not only that: express sincere concern for others and try, whenever possible, to look at things from the other person’s point of view.
- Recognize, praise, and reward
“Skills wither under criticism, flourish under encouragement”. Be generous with compliments, but in a genuine way. No false flattery, but whenever there is the chance give sincere approval to your coworkers, show your appreciation for their effort and their achieved results.
- Admit your mistakes, even more when you are the leader
Making mistakes is human, we are not perfect, and it is fair to admit it, even more so if the leader is you. Show your co-workers that awareness is the first step, admit when you have failed or made a mistake. Great leaders see mistakes as an opportunity to learn and overcome, rather than as a setback.
- Take and give the lead
In a company, a single leader is not enough. For this reason, workers should be continuously trained to ensure that they take on greater responsibilities and work on development in the future.
Building a successful team
Leadership also includes the ability to select talent, inspire them and let them express themselves to their fullest, without being afraid that they will not succeed.
Want to read more blogs? Check out our blog about networking here.