Effective, trusted, respected and admired leadership isn’t about ordering people around like a drill sergeant. True leadership is about helping those around you become leaders themselves — guiding them to the discovery and use of their potential. Rather than creating dependency and fear in others, true leaders mentor others to reach for more within themselves and the experience.
If you’ve ever been in a situation in which a person in a position of leadership was irrational (not calm and composed), didn’t listen well and was verbally abusive or demeaning, you understand leadership is about actions and not titles.
When a “leader” adds to the dysfunction of a situation instead of contributing to its improvement, leadership is damaged and even destroyed. People come to distrust this person and loyalty evaporates. They lose their willingness to listen to this leader. Respect for the person vanishes and along with it the desire to follow.
You’re a leader whether you’re aware of it or not.
- You lead at work, at home and in your community.
- You lead by your example in all the areas of your life.
Your team members watch. Spouses, children, friends, family and people you don’t even know watch you for guidance on how to successfully navigate the professional and personal realms of life.
Is your example of leadership as solid as you’d like it to be?
To be effective, trusted, respected and admired leader, you must consistently provide a solid example for others to follow, one that empowers others to become the best versions of themselves. Your example must be composed, egalitarian, fair, inspiring and true. One that’s proactive rather than reactive and not based in fear. The greatest leaders in history had these very same qualities that spoke to the hearts and minds of their followers.
A critical trait of being a solid leader is accountability — the ability to hold yourself to the standards of effective communication, empowerment, integrity, learning, listening, openness and teamwork. True leaders don’t need others to hold them accountable because they know the power of implementing these qualities on a consistent basis. In fact, effective, trusted, respected and admired leaders enjoy holding themselves accountable to the very best within them. They also find pleasure in helping others to be their very best and develop constructive approaches to accomplish the transformation.
The best leaders are those who look at themselves first to make improvements. They don’t blame others. They look in the mirror, own what’s theirs to fix, do so and then work constructively with others to be accountable as well. Leaders aren’t victims of others or circumstances and maintain their composure.
Effective, trusted, respected and admired leaders look for solutions rather being blinded by problems. They see opportunities for growth, development and improvement. They have a “get to” attitude, are grateful for life and all that it contains and don’t take people or life for granted. They understand the value of life, time and people.
Solid leadership in business and life begins with you and provides a consistent and credible example for others to follow. Developing the ability to lead effectively will improve your business. As your leadership becomes more effective, so will the rest of your team. The company culture will thrive as team members are inspired by your leadership. Positive energy will grow as people feel heard, recognized, supported and valued. They’ll strive to do and be their best.
There’s a tremendous need for solid leadership right now to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, political divisions and economic uncertainty. We need effective, trusted, respected and admired leaders to help us get past these problems.
The best leaders are aware of their strengths and weaknesses.
They know when to engage professionals to help them deal with their weaknesses and leverage their strengths. If you aspire to be the best leader you can be, explore your resources and options and then go for it.