We all have the potential to become a leader, yet many fall short in developing their ability to become one or to reach beyond the status quo. There are a variety of reasons why this may be so ranging from not knowing what to do to sheer laziness in becoming the best that they can be as leader. If you want to develop your leadership abilities then the five points covered in this article may help you to overcome areas that may be holding you back.
1: Become a Follower.
The heading of this topic may sound counterintuitive to you but consider this. There are potential leaders who view becoming a follower as something beneath them, whereas it is an essential quality for moving forward. There are few if any leaders in the world who have become one without the help and advice of other leaders. Excellent leaders have learned to be excellent followers in their development.
Find yourself a mentor. Follow him or her around. Watch what they do and glean the positive elements of their actions. A leader-mentor is someone who has more experience than you, someone who you look up to and want to be like. Someone who shares your values, ethics and principles.
A mentor will help you become focused and motivated; provide you with honest feedback; teaches you to problem solve and encourages your growth and development.
You need not be ashamed to follow and be inspired by someone. You will learn much more than if you walk alone. It takes a bit of humility to follow someone, but if you don’t you will never have what is needed to guide others. Following a mentor also prepares you to become a mentor of other potential leaders.
2. Be A Continuous Learner.
Make a point of nurturing a growth mindset. You can’t know everything, but you can become an expert in your field. And it is in this capacity that you will be trusted. Open your mind to not only learning the ‘hard technical skills’ in your area of expertise but also the ‘soft skills’ you will need to relate to others. Leadership is about engaging others to move forward, to follow a vision and to have others take action on a shared vision. In order to do that leaders need necessary soft skills to engage their followers.
3: Know your Values and Commit to them.
Great leaders believe in firm positive values. Take the necessary time to uncover your values and then live and defend them. One of the major breakdowns among leaders is that they do not follow the values they preach. This is most unfortunate because followers become jaded, skeptical and seek to remove themselves as a follower. Here are five key values of successful leaders.
4. Become a Public Speaker
One of the most stressful and difficult skills is to become a public speaker. Yet if you want to become a leader you must acquire the ability to speak in front of an audience. There is no doubt that public speaking can indeed be stressful, and even scary, but it’s a habit you have to get into. Public speaking can be learned through practice as many have witnessed, for instance:
5. Passionately Adhere to Your Vision
Spend the necessary time in cultivating your vision – where you would like to be. Followers follow a leader with vision. It has been said that most people like to be led but they only follow leaders who are passionate about their vision. In the process of leading with passion be yourself rather than being like someone else. Let your authenticity shine through your actions and continually act with integrity.
These five steps alone will not make you a leader, but if you master them you will be on your way to become one. A measure of a good leadership is the ability to influence, thus by following these five steps you will learn what it takes to influence others.
Thank you for reading and as always take care, be safe and become the best version of yourself.
Resource: Become A Leader: Find the Leader Within You.
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