Things you should know about leadership
Leadership is not simply about having the power to take the decision. It is about having the power to make the decision happen. To influence the decision on one side. On the other side to support people, it would not have been possible without. The followers.
To put it differently, leadership may be associated with management and it is good when a manager is a leader. However, good developing organizations foster leadership behavior on lower employee level as well.
The more people feel empowered to raise their ideas, the more agile and change adaptable a company is.
No matter which level, the top or the middle, being a leader is a skill you may develop.
If you have ever wondered whether you have leadership ability or if you want to check what is essential to get it, here are the key characteristics a leader must have?
Along your career or life, it may be complicated to get that comfort within yourself to get to understand and accept who you really are.
Then on top goes the ability and comfort to show that “real you” to people around you. Even more to people in your working environment.
We are surrounded by too many believes and perspectives of how a leader should look like and behave. That affects our own imagination and action. Judgment simply blocks us.
Being real is however, what attracts people. Some will not like what they see. Still that is not that important. Leader is not to be likeable but needs to be trust worthy.
Nobody cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.
This quote by Theodore Roosevelt is the essence of empathy. This is actually a critical skill for a leader.
Why is that? Without empathy, there is no trust. Without trust, there is no real unity and no aiming at one goal.
Empathy has very much to do with listening and pursuing the context. A leader has to understand his or her coworkers’ perception and respect them. People around are the most valuable asset.
I recommend to read this article which describes empathy in a very clear way.
To me passion goes hand in hand with authenticity. When we are passionate about something, our ability to get attention, get heard and finally get followed goes up. Passion boosts communication of vision. You can tell the difference when a leader says “I want you to believe in that” vs “I believe in that”.
Let us not mix passion with an attitude of an ever-over active person jumping on every topic. Some of the best leaders are calm with even sometimes slightly withdrawn attitude.
To me for example, passion is the desire to serve others and to do the best work one can do. An expression I once read and that mostly corresponds to my leadership style.
A leader should represent so many other traits, like good communication skills, creativity, courage, decisiveness and open mind or transparency.
However, when you start to evaluate those it all goes down to these three mentioned.