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leadership & strategy image

6 Keys to Effective Leadership

The most effective leaders make sure everyone knows what they are supposed to be doing and why.

Based on a survey of more than 5000 leaders conducted across multiple industries, it was deduced that great leaders have clarity on what they stand for and also thought about how they want to engage their followers. (Source: Ozy)

There has been much talk about leadership – whether it an inane or acquired trait, art or science, etc. There can be many leaders, but what makes an effective leader? Leaders may share the same traits. However, an effective leader rises among the pack to accomplish what he has set to do.

Let’s take a look at six components which make leadership effective.

 

Belief in Self

Every individual has leadership qualities, but only some are able to show it. Have you ever thought why so? It is because the leaders have strong confidence in their abilities. They firmly believe that have the ‘X’ factor to achieve their dreams/mission by leading the people. With their power of self-belief, they work hard on making their strengths stronger and overcoming weaknesses. Even rejections don’t deter their self-belief. Bill Gates dropped out of Harvard to start a business called ‘Traf-O-Data’. The idea failed but he knew that he had it in him to do something. Then, he created Microsoft. Rest is history, as they say.

 

Goal Setting

It is strange how every leader knows that goal-setting is important, but very few do it. Vision alone does not suffice, an effective leader charts the path that will accomplish this vision. The journey to the vision is made up of small, measurable goals. The leader not only sets goals for himself, but also his people. Take the example of President John F. Kennedy. He was known for setting long-term ambitious goals, but also spent considerable time with his people to make them understand how these goals can be achieved.

 

Optimism

Leaders are the motivators. Their followers look up to them to receive inspiration. Imagine if the leader talks pessimism and easily get defeated by setbacks or defeats, what would the followers think? An effective leader is a beacon of optimism. He does not focus on problems, rather he seeks solutions. He is able to cope with adverse situations without losing the focus on the big picture and future. An optimistic leader does not wallow in a dark, but bounces back even stronger. Have you heard of Peter Diamandis? He is the CEO of a non-profit organization “X Prize Foundation’ and was named one of the top 50 leaders of the world in Forbes 2014 list. It is said that he has infectious optimism which motivates each person in his team to transform the world by their unique contribution.

 

Giving Value to People

It is people who select a leader. People follow leaders by choice. If a leader can’t value his people, it wouldn’t take long for them to topple him from the seat. Unfortunately, leaders conveniently forget this fact. An effective leader does not work in isolation but encourages people to walk along with him. Mahatma Gandhi used to say that honest disagreement is a good sign of progress. His words of wisdom teach that a leader shows displeasure if his followers voice opinions and differences. An effective leader believes in his people, trusts them, delegates responsibilities gives them respect and pays attention to their suggestions.

 

Continuous Learning

Leadership is a continuous learning process. An effective leader constantly seeks opportunities that can add to his knowledge and wisdom. This is how he overcomes his weaknesses and failures. He is also the follower of leaders and mentors who inspire him. He spends hours reading books on leadership or even taking up advanced leadership development programs to hone his skills. Great leaders such as Winston Churchill and Steve Jobs were avid readers.

 

Accepting Mistakes

Owing to his position, a leader’s pride may not allow him to accept his mistakes. But, an effective leader would gracefully embrace his blunders. He understands that his mistakes or incorrect decisions could result in the failure of goals and demoralize the people. By admitting mistakes, a leader just proves that he is human and not perfect. However, at the same time, the leader leaves his slip-ups behind, takes lessons and moves forward in life. He knows that he can’t undo his mistake. So, he simply analyses why it happened in the first place and what he could do to rectify it and avoid it in the future. By doing so, he earns respect from people and builds a culture of trust. In his book ‘I, Steve: Steve Jobs In His Own Words’, the Apple CEO rightly said, “Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.”

It is not a smooth ride to leadership and then being effective at it. If you want to become one and pick up some tips, executive leadership courses would be a good start.

It feels so good to be in the position of a leader, but so tough to fulfil the responsibility that comes with it!

If you are leading a team, there must be certain characteristics that define your leadership style. The question is whether you know your leadership style and are doing things right!

 

Enroll Leadership Management Online Certificate Course

 

Leadership is an inherent element in the working of a business organisation. Managing a business is just not enough. Leaders guide the team towards new goals successfully. In fact, strong leadership can take even a down-going business to soar heights. Depending on a particular leader’s personality, the leadership traits can vary.

 

Leadership styles find their place among the modules in a majority of leadership development courses. However, we give you a brief insight into six leadership styles to help you become a good leader.

 

  • Democratic: This is a participative kind of leadership where the team members are included in problem-solving and decision making. This approach is taken for maximum involvement and work satisfaction of team members.

 

  • Autocratic: Just the opposite of democratic style, an autocratic leader takes all the decisions, keeps critical information with him and also punishes members for mistakes. This works well in handling critical time-bound situations.

 

  • Transformational: Here, the leader exhibits transformational behaviour and motivates the team to perform much more than expected, with newer thoughts and beliefs. The charismatic qualities promote a sense of well being in the team.

 

  • Transactional: Here, the leader promotes compliance by providing financial gains for positive results and meting out punishments for below quality or negative work.

 

  • Laissez Faire: This type of leadership style is adopted when members are quite experienced and skilled. The leader lets them manage things and allows freedom of thought and decision. Though available for advice, the leader is mostly not completely in charge.

 

  • Relations Encouraging Style: The leader is completely oriented on the people here. The personal development of the team members is a first priority which in turn encourages team approach and creativity.

 

It would be unwise to label anyone leadership style as the best among all. In order to be a good leader, you need to adopt the most appropriate style as per the need of the hour. The best leaders are those who learn to choose the right style at the right time, in accordance with the project, the skill required and time frame. Such leaders emerge to be highly successful in their mission.

 

If you want to become an effective leader, enrol in online leadership courses in India.

 

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