Standing up to be counted
At least once in every person’s life they will be asked to stand up to take control of a situation and be a leader. For a lot of people this can be daunting. The idea that they are responsible for not only their decisions but for actions of other people can be very overwhelming. Some people will fold under the pressure and other will shine and become outstanding leaders. Through the years I have seen some fantastic leaders, where they were bosses or sport coaches, they knew how to draw the best out of people and encourage them to do the best they could. Then I have seen some people that have no idea about leadership and all they do is rub people up the wrong way and, for the most, are only interested in themselves and what they can get out of the whole situation. So today we will look at leadership and how you can utilise it to your life and the lives of those around you better.
The first trait of leadership is listening to people. A good leader listens to his/her staff or team to find out what are their strengths and weakness. Through listening to their staff a leader will discover what personal issues their staff are facing, what a person thinks of their own abilities and what goal aspiration and dreams a person has. Listening allows a leader to find out information that they wouldn’t normally get through a person’s work or through various evaluations. When a leader does not do listen to their staff they have little idea about why their staffs/teams performance is down, and then they have little chance on being able to help that person get through their problem.
Listen to the people around you then allows you to be more supportive of your staff. A good leader supports and encourages their staff through positive comments which then allows them to perform at their best. The old saying is you catch more flying with honey than vinegar, this is what a leader lives by. A leader get more from their staff by supporting them through the hard times whether it is a work related matter or a person issue. An offer of support is always welcomed by people in need. Leaders also encourages their staff and rarely yell at them. They never put them down or belittle them. A leader talks to staff about mistakes they have made and works together on a solution. They thank their staff for their efforts and encourages them to try harder through challenging them to do better for better rewards. When a leader shows no support or yells everyday at their staff, the staff moral is low, there is high absenteeism and productivity is down. The staff will offer no support to the leader as they get none from them. Remember you get back what you put out.
Another important aspect of a leader is that they motivate their staff to achieve their goals, even if their goals are not related to the business. A leader realises that their staff have dreams and aspirations and by helping them achieve their goals the staff will be happier. Happier staff means better performance. Another reason to motivate staff to go for non-business related goals is because a good leader will see the opportunities to integrate the staffs goals with the business goals. For example a worker wants more money, the company can help by providing more over time, or providing extra training so that the person can move up in the company to a high paying job. This is a win-win for the business and the staff. When the leader ignores or belittles the staff members dreams because they are not related to the business the staff are less likely to try and achieve anything making for unhappy staff and less production.
A leader must also at times make the hard call and do things that can make them unpopular. A leader works the good of everybody and not just their personal gain. The coach of a team has to choose players on their performance. Players are often dropped if they are not up to scratch, even if they were the best player last week. They choose what is best for the team. A leader recognises that playing or not playing someone one personal feelings is foolish and will damage team moral. Leaders that cannot make the hard calls often run inefficient businesses as they are not willing to take responsibility for their actions.
The final area that we will look at is admitting mistakes. A good leader knows when they are wrong and admits to it. As a leader you need to take the good with the bad. While a leader gets to stand up at take all the glory, they also need to step back and take criticism for when they do the wrong thing. They need to admit to the problem, then take steps with the staff to ensure that it doesn’t happen again. If the leader has not got the support of the staff this will be hard, but if you have been supporting your staff, then they will be more forgiving and more willing to help you out. Plus when you make a mistake, as a good leader you will be willing to listen to advice from staff that will help solve the problem. Poor leaders try to cover mistakes, blame other people and even ignore that problems exist.
So I want you to be able to look at the tips above and try to implement them into your life. A good leader does these things everyday regardless, not when they just have to. Being a leader is quite simple to do and can be done every day. Listen to the people around you, support them and encourage them and never belittle them, motivated them and help them achieve their dreams and be willing to say that you were wrong.
If you try this every day you will soon become good a good leader and you will see a massive in change in your life, in how you now think and what people now think of you. Remember it not what happens to us in life that people judge us, it is how we respond. You won’t be perfect straight away but you do need to keep on trying and if things go wrong try again because you can only get better. To quote David Lee Roth “Stand up, the more you do it the less you fall down.”
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