Hi Meaningful Leaders,
As you well know, when it comes to leadership, it can be easy to get caught up in the intricacies of the job. From complex strategies to difficult decisions, the job of a leader can be overwhelming at times. But no matter how complex the job may be, there are still some basic elements that all good leaders must master in order to succeed.
Leadership is an essential skill in the workplace, and one that can make a significant difference in the success of any organization. It’s important for leaders to keep in mind the fundamentals of leading effectively and valuing the importance of keeping people first. Going back to the basics of leadership can be a valuable exercise for any leader, regardless of experience.
And please don’t take my word for it, a survey conducted by the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) in 2020 revealed the following key findings:
- 84% of American workers say poorly trained people managers (aka leaders) create a lot of unnecessary work and stress;
- 57% of American workers say managers in their workplace could benefit from training on how to be a better people manager;
- Half (50%) feel their own performance would improve if their direct supervisor received additional training in people management;
- The top five skills people managers could improve, according to American workers, were: Communicating effectively (41 percent), developing and training the team (38 percent), managing time and delegating (37 percent), cultivating a positive and inclusive team culture (35 percent), and managing team performance (35 percent).
And this is not an American problem alone, employees worldwide struggle due to low-performing and poorly trained leaders.
***note: stats like these are the reason I create this content every week…
At its core, leadership is about influencing and inspiring others to work towards a common goal. This can be achieved by developing a trusting relationship between the leader and their team. After all, team-building is relationship building. Leaders should strive to build a culture of collaboration and respect, so that their followers can feel comfortable expressing their ideas and taking risks; after all a leader without followers is just a manager.
Leaders must also be able to make tough decisions. This requires a leader to have the courage to make the right decision, even when it is unpopular. Leaders must have the confidence to listen to their people, weigh the various options, and make the best decision for the team.
Additionally, leaders must have the ability to adapt to change. As the world around us changes, it is important for leaders to be able to modify their strategies and tactics to accommodate new challenges. Leaders must be able to recognize when their strategies are no longer effective, and be willing to make changes when necessary, as well as to own their mistakes and make amends.
If I was asked to summarize the main basis elements any highly engaged leader should practice, I would say:
- Communication – A leader needs to be able to communicate clearly and effectively in order to ensure that their message is understood by their team. A leader needs to be able to explain their vision and inspire their team to take action. A leader needs to provide feedback that is both constructive and motivating in order to help their team reach their goals.
- Self-regulation – Having a clearly define buffer between action (what happens to us) and reaction (our response) assist leaders tremendously in keeping their emotions and reactions proactive and in context with their audience.
- Trust – Trust between a leader and their team is essential for a successful team. A leader needs to be able to trust their team to complete tasks and follow through on their commitments, micro-management is outdated. A leader also needs to be able to trust their team to make the right decisions and take the right risks. Without trust, a team won’t be able to function properly. But this is a two-way street. The team should also be able to trust its leader and to know their opinion, input and collaboration matters, regardless of the differences of opinions between them and their leader.
- Accountability – A leader needs to be able to hold their team accountable when they make mistakes. A leader needs to be able to confront mistakes and failures head-on and take corrective action. A leader also needs to be able to provide positive reinforcement when their team succeeds, giving credit where credit is due.
- Delegation – A leader needs to be able to delegate tasks and responsibilities to their team in order to make sure that the tasks are completed on time and to the highest standard. If the leader is concern with taking all the glory, they’ll be limiting the reach and success the team can have.
These are just a few of the basic elements that all good leaders need to master in order to be successful. According to a survey conducted by the Harvard Business Review, 91% of successful leaders confirmed that mastering these basic elements was key to their success.
Leadership is a complex and ever-evolving field, but it’s important to remember the basics. Highly-engaged leaders understand the value of going back to the fundamentals of leadership, and of staying grounded in its core principles.
I hope you found value here today, if so, please like, comment and share with one person who can benefit from this content.
Thanks for reading and God bless,