Many books and hundreds of articles have been written to address what makes good leaders. Basically, good leadership is the ability to influence and impact others in positive ways to bring good results for themselves, their organizations, their communities, and the world.
What makes a leader successful? We can all be leaders but to be conscious about our intent and actions makes the difference.
1. Successful leaders know themselves well and what they bring to the environment in which they operate. They have values in which they believe and those values drive their behaviors. These leaders “walk the talk” and are in real alignment with their purpose and actions.
2. They take the time to know and understand others. They create an environment of safety, respect, appreciation of difference, and a sense of fair play and fun. Encouraging others to feel free to do their best and redirect them when needed in respectful ways is key for influencing positive results.
3. One may think that successful leaders are visionaries and that would be true. They look at the possibilities and not just the present; futuristic thinking is the modality. Questions are raised and limitations are put aside. To that end, leaders then align their goals, objectives, strategies, action plans and teams to enable them to focus on the vision. They are able to easily identify potential problems as well as positive patterns and trends.
4. Direct action is the clear indicator of moving forward as a successful leader. Acting decisively once the plan is in place will bring about the needed progress. Leaders also determine how the plan will impact customers, employees, stakeholders, and anyone else involved in the organization. It is an integral part of the plan to consider the short and long-term perspectives of any work.
5. Leaders do not act in isolation; they engage their team by serving others—understanding their motivation, what their desires and goals are and meeting them where they live in order to influence the team and drive its members to greatness. This behavior is genuine and powerful. It is in alignment with the value of respect for others. Positive energy and the ability to focus on the possibilities engender excitement and enthusiastic work, creating high energy teams who get the work done efficiently and effectively.
Considering your position in your organization—are you a successful leader? Do you spend the day reacting or creating positive action? How can you become the most successful leader of your team and within your organization?