Being a leader does not start with a job title it actually starts with a job. From the moment you start a job you have the empowering ability to become a leader. In fact, most leaders do not even think of themselves as leaders first because it is something that is simple automatic to them.
So what are the things that you can do you become a leader, regardless of your role or title? Today, we begin by talking about some of the characteristics of great leaders. Mimicking the behaviors of great leaders is the easiest way to transform or improve yourself.
1) Awareness - Your role in the organization is important, from the mailroom to the boardroom, each person in an organization has a role and a purpose. Being aware of your surroundings and how your role fits into the larger organization is the first step towards being a leader. After all, how can one lead if they do not understand where they are. Knowing the connection points of how your role can have a positive or negative impact will help you understand why your role is important. It may also help you uncover what you can do to improve the efficiency or quality of your deliverables If you do a better job, it is inevitable that your connection points will improve.
2) Encourage others - Conflict is part of everyday life, but good leaders always make an environment where others feel safe to speak up. Encouraging others to speak their mind and share, with confidence, is required. Getting their take on things is something that will no only allow you to grow as a person but will also embolden you as a leader. Being an approachable person will gain you respect and with give you more awareness to make better decisions.
3) Be decisive - One thing that sets all leaders apart is their ability to make a decision. Being a successful leader usually means that you are also an expert when it comes to making decisions. Not all decisions have to be correct, however facilitating the dialog that allows the team to reach a conclusion that is in line with strategy is a form of decision making. Focusing on making things happen is really important. Do not get bogged down with the issues that disrupt momentum. Know how to make a call and enable the team around you to make things happen.
4) Communicate - Being a good leader cannot happen without strong communication skills. Expressing clearly what your expectations are will go a long way towards helping your team and those around you perform. This does not require you to be a supervisor, but merely a team member. Understanding that the better a team communicates the higher they will perform. Reminding everyone of the team's expectations can keep the team focused and on track.
5) Be Accountable - A good leader is always accountable, not only to themselves but to others. Be proactive for your teammates and go above and beyond mentoring. It will show as a sign that you are focused more the success of the team rather that your own personal success, this is very important!