Whether you own your own business, manage an organization, or lead a team, it’s vital to keep developing yourself if you want to improve the results you get from your staff year after year.
Many people blame a lack of success on the people working for them, but a key part of being an excellent leader is knowing how to take responsibility. If you want to become the best person to take a team forward, there are some steps you need to follow today and in the future.
Get to Know Yourself Better
Firstly, stop and think about what drives you as a person and a leader. You need to know yourself to be the best manager possible, so make sure you understand your core values and what gives you a sense of purpose to do your job and lead a team. When you’re clear about what’s most important to you and your specific strengths and interests, it’s easier to convey this to employees so they feel more inspired and motivated. You can better find the right people to complement your abilities and fill gaps where you lack in areas.
Look for ways to align your work and the way you lead with your values and passions so that you’re your most authentic self. This comes across to people, and they’re much more likely to trust you, respect you, and be their authentic selves, too, which adds up to a more harmonious and committed team.
Let Go of Limiting Beliefs
Another part of knowing yourself better so you can be an effective manager is determining the limiting beliefs that have been holding you back in your life and that no longer serve you. We all have intrusive thoughts and harmful, negative self-talk habits that get in the way of us excelling and progressing. Such limiting ideas zap energy and stop us from challenging ourselves to go after exciting opportunities, learn new things, and generally get out of our comfort zone to achieve more.
Do some work on yourself to clean up any long-term “stories” about you and your life that you’ve been holding onto for far too long. For instance, you might think you’re not a good public speaker because of one less-than-ideal reaction to a talk at school many years ago.
This outlook, in turn, may be stopping you from speaking with authority and inspiration to your employees or presenting effectively at the company conference when people really want to hear from you. If you can rewrite this story and reframe it differently, you can do more in your role and achieve more remarkable results.
Improve Your Communication Skills
Leaders must have excellent communication skills to get their requests, ideas, disappointments, and more across to their team members. To manage your team well, make sure you excel in this area. You need to get your point across in face-to-face conversations and emails, reports, phone calls, online meetings, and other methods.
However, keep in mind that a critical part of being a good communicator is listening, too. You can’t be a leader who gets top results if you don’t spend just as much time hearing what your staff members have to say as you do speaking yourself. Listening will help you identify problems that people may be alluding to in a roundabout way that you need to address, and make workers feel more valued, heard, and appreciated.
When you listen well, you can collect the facts and make wise decisions rather than jumping to assumptions or immediately assigning blame where it may not be due. Pay attention to what other people are saying in conversations rather than thinking about what you want to say next, so you don’t miss anything, and so employees don’t get the feeling that you care more about your point of view than theirs.
Another part of comprehensive performance management skills that come about via discussions is assessing body language. Try to notice how people respond physically to what you or others are saying. Are they standing with arms folded, appearing closed off and wary, or are they fidgeting out of boredom or nervousness? Are they grinding their teeth in frustration, potentially, or leaning forward to take everything in?
Sometimes people will tell you “yes” but subconsciously shake their head, indicating that they’re thinking “no” instead. There are many visual cues you can tune into that will help you to understand those you’re working with much better and lead them more effectively in turn.
Some other ways to become a leader who gets results include checking your ego at the door more, learning to regulate your emotions, and holding yourself accountable rather than blaming others for less-than-ideal outcomes. You want to get good at recognizing the resources you have available to you and delegating well, too.
All these factors are things you can keep working on over the years. The more you hone strengths in such areas, the more you should find your job becomes easier and you get more out of your staff members, too.