They say great leaders are born. This is true, but it doesn’t mean leadership skills can’t be taught. Leadership takes consistency, focus and commitment.
Here are seven things that every successful leader does:
1. Encourage Others to Speak Their Minds
Successful leaders don’t make themselves the center of attention. Instead, they encourage those around them to take responsibility and voice their opinions. Good leaders create a safe environment and make their colleagues feel confident enough to share their perspectives.
2. Make Tough Decisions
Part of being a leader is making the decisions that others can’t – or don’t want to – make. A good leader is focused on making things happen and doesn’t allow time to be wasted on issues that don’t move the organization forward.
3. Stay Focused
A company’s mission statement isn’t just for show, it is meant to serve as a guide for decision making and moving the organization forward. A good leader never loses sight of his or her goals and makes sure each and every decision is aligned with the goals of the organization.
Good communication is one of, if not the most important, quality in a successful leader. Every business leader should be able to interact with members of the organization at all levels on a daily basis. Whether this means setting goals, clarifying expectations or reminding employees of your collective vision, a good leader should have some sort of rapport with his or her employees.
5. Cultivate More Leadership
You don’t have to be the only leader in your organization. In fact, encouraging your employees to take on more responsibility can take a huge weight off your shoulders, provide them with an opportunity to grow and may help things run more smoothly.
Although not everyone will be willing or able to take on a leadership role, you can still encourage them to be more accountable for their actions by reminding them of their individual significance to the company, the important role that they play and how the work they do has an impact. Employees who are confident in their abilities are more likely to accomplish their goals and contribute to the larger goals of the organization.
6. Recognize and Reward Good Work
This goes along with the previous point, but recognizing and acknowledging employees who do good work makes them feel valued and reinforces that behavior. Successful leaders don’t take consistency for granted and want to keep their top performers happy.
7. Learn and Educate
Not only do successful leaders never stop learning, they never stop teaching either. They train their employees to stay knowledgeable about the organization and its industry through news, statistics and trends. Good leaders know that people are their most valuable resource and will happily invest in those who want to and are capable of advancing.
Good leadership comes down to the ability to sustain success. One person cannot do it all themselves, so it is important to empower the people around you and encourage growth across all levels of the organization. After all, your employees’ success is your success.