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10 Tips to Improve Your Leadership Skills at Work
A good leader is an individual who is self-motivated and likes to take initiative. He/she holds the team together towards a common goal. It is the responsibility of the leader to make a clear roadmap of what has to be achieved. When the chips are down, they are the one who stands by their team and motivates the team members. When the team digresses from the path, they are the ones who channel the efforts in the right direction. A leader is empathetic and flexible to the needs of people.
10 Best Tips to Improve Leadership Skills
Obviously, not all managers are born leaders. But the good news is, leadership qualities can be learned. Following are 10 tips to practice at the workplace that will make you a leader everyone admires −
1. Offering to help
Understanding and addressing the needs of others is paramount for being a good leader. Even if you already have enough on your plate, you need to listen to others in need. If any of your juniors are struggling with a new project, sit and talk it out with them. In this way, you are not just helping others but also earning their love and respect, two important ingredients for a leader.
2. Seeking other’s input
A good leader always reaches out for others’ suggestions. In this way, he is successful at capturing the minutest of the details of the problem The problem is solved more quickly. Besides, the other members feel included and heard. One way to incorporate this at the workplace is to ask open-ended questions instead of yes/no questions. This enables the members to share their thoughts comprehensively.
3. Have a clear vision
It is important for a leader to have a vision. What is to be achieved as a leader? What is the short-term goal? What are the long terms goals? A leader should have a clear answer to all these questions. At the end of the day, it is the end goal that keeps the motivated. Moving ahead, they should break down the vision into smaller actionable steps and get going.
4. Own your mistakes
It takes courage to own up to your mistake and face ignominy. Good leaders do not shy away from this. Neither do they sweep their blunders under a rug, nor do they blame others for their mistakes. They take accountability for the consequences of their actions. This is followed by them leaving no stone unturned to alleviate the situation and bring back normalcy.
5. Master communication
Communicating with others is one of the most crucial aspects of leadership. Hence, a good leader should have excellent communication skills (both verbal and nonverbal). Not only does it help in sharing your vision with others, but also increases productivity. It induces confidence in the person and helps gain the trust of fellow employees.
Some of the good communication practices at the workplace include being clear and concise, listening effectively, mastering the art of storytelling, and giving and taking regular feedback.
6. Delegating effectively
The manager often has to delegate tasks at work. A good leader does not view this as an opportunity to dump all the unpleasant tasks on others. Rather, it should be used as a tool to give the team members a chance to showcase their skills and prove their worth.
For delegation, a good understanding of the strengths and weaknesses, the unique abilities, and the interests of your employees is important. A wrong delegation of tasks can lead to a complete failure of the project. Also, the leader should have clear and realistic expectations from the person he is delegating the task to.
7. Grow your network
Networking is an essential part of the work. Good leaders make efforts to build their personal brand so that people like to associate with them. They do not restrict people of a particular kind. Their networks are as diverse as possible. Also, good leaders do not network with people when they need, they network when they can. Some of the great ways to network with people are by attending industry events and alumni events, being active on social media, having lunch with coworkers, and mentoring new workers.
8. Always encourage
A good leader drives his/her team out of a gloomy situation through his/her motivational words. He/she keeps reassuring the team that eventually they would make it. He/she maintains his/her equanimity in the trickiest of the situation, offering words of comfort to the team in this way, the team knows that they can bank on their leader in the toughest times which induces a sense of comfort and confidence in them.
9. Know your strengths
Good leaders have an excellent level of self-awareness. They know what they are best at and how to capitalize on that. They know what areas they need to improve upon. This knowledge helps them in taking accountability and delegate tasks effectively. Some of the ways to increase your degree of self-awareness include self-reflection, seeking feedback, engaging in professional development activities, and attempting assessments like a personality test, leadership style assessment, etc.
10. Maintain Transparency
Maintaining transparency is an important step toward creating a trustworthy work environment at the workplace. This single step eliminates lots of vices a work like rumors, distrust, uncertainty, etc. It is the responsibility of the leader to keep the employees updated about both the good as well as bad news of the company. Besides, it is important that the leader is communicating regularly with coworkers, to make sure they are on the same page and their concerns are addressed. Only then will the team members will feel included and give their 100% at work.
It takes a lot to be a good leader. And nobody is born with all the attributes. Hence, the bottom line is that leadership and practiced and learned over time. But by putting into play the above practices, you take a step towards effective leadership. Being consistent at the practices is the key.
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