The 5 Key Characteristics That Makes Great Leaders
Getting a leadership position is one thing. Keeping the job, making a positive difference and realizing long-term impact is totally another.
Knowing how to impact people above, below and at the same level make the difference between being a remarkable, influential leader and a ordinary leader.
Knowing how to coalesce people in your charge behind a common vision is skill that facilitate team growth and elevate the leader in he eyes of the market.
Learn what makes leaders go from good to great
What got you to your current leadership position won’t keep there forever. Nothing is linear in life; Past efforts and the stroke of luck that got you to where you are today won’t be enough to secure your upward mobility and career ascension.
Attributes like your educational background, experience, personality, and native intelligence are essential but are not enough to impact your employees, peers, and bosses to create meaningful changes.
Your team performance elevation, your ability to solve challenging problems, and successful partnership building, will define your professional path and speed of growth.
Leadership is the catalyst that identifies and transforms talent into its best version. As a manager, your most important job is to help those around you to reach their highest potential. Compassionate leaders groom their employees to be solicitous with their customers, subordinates, and all others, which leads to performance.
Real impact requires mastering these five challenging transitions.
1-Influence: The company’s senior leadership directives rarely influence employees. Many studies have shown that the most significant influencers are colleagues with similar ranks and power range. The stronger the connection among team members, the faster the adoption of the initiative. Employees fear change but hop on board when they see other colleagues on board with it.
Emotions always trump analytics. A smart leader identifies popular employees and has them persuade their coworkers to get on board with the new initiative. On average most employees have a strong connection with less than five coworkers; the stronger the relationship, the higher the influence and acceptance rate.
Shrewd managers leverage these connections to change behaviors and increase the adoption rate.
2- Efficiency: leading a group of employees with relevant skills to produce specific results tend to be the norm on most companies. Defining specific tasks, aligning people behind the vision, and conducting progress measurement tends to be the role most managers play.
To achieve goals at a faster rate and with more accuracy requires a high level of trust, a greater level of shared interactions, and interconnectedness among the team members. The higher the confidence, openness, and honesty among the team members, the better the outcome.
The stronger the internal bond, idea share, and risk mitigation factor, the higher the performance. The leader’s job is to reinforce the internal team bond and facilitate external reach to secure resources to meet objectives.
3- Innovation: The conventional wisdom to improve any product-development segment is to get people with the right functional background, experience in innovative projects, similar history, and close age range. Yet, real innovation occurs when extreme diversity is manifested in the age group, background experiences, professional exposure, and thinking process divergence.
When differences of opinion, freedom of debate, and acceptance of unique perspectives are welcome and celebrated, everyone wins and creativity blossom. Nothing is linear in innovation, you may be aiming for a specific outcome, and accidentally you realize you have just stumbled into an expected valuable outcome.
What you do with that new knowledge is all that matters. Good leaders turn these unexpected occurrences into new goals.
4- Connectors: Every company has few vital employees that are extremely good at their job. They are so good that if you are to lose them, the company productivity will suffer. These employees are middle-managers, operation workers that possess the key to interacting with critical influencers within the organization and with outside partners and suppliers. They are often the person to go when you are lost and need directions.
They are often the bridge that connects you to the right people in different critical departments. These connectors, while vital, represent chock points that make the organization vulnerable in case of a loss of one of these employees. The key is to leverage these people to share their knowledge willingly to improve information flow and create multiple connectors to lessen the company’s vulnerability.
5- Dependency: A leader’s value is linked to his team performance. A failed leader is someone who misses performance goals because they coach for compliance rather than career advancement and growth. A trustworthy leader coaches his employees beyond areas of strength and weaknesses but instead focuses on getting the employee to align his or her ideal-self with the real-self.
Real coaching act as Andrew Carnegie once said, “men are developed the same way that gold is mined. When gold is mined, several tons of dirt must be moved to get an ounce of gold, but one doesn’t go into the mine looking for dirt — one goes in looking for gold.”
Coaching is not a performance improvement plan designed to address development shortcomings. Instead, it’s the art of turning raw talent into its most ideal form