When we think about leaders, we often picture the CEO of a large and powerful corporation. However, organizations require leadership at all levels. You don’t have to have a fancy title and a corner office to be a leader.
Are you looking to take on a greater leadership role at your company? Use these three tips to grow your skills.
1. Offer to Help Others
If you see a new employee struggling with a task, what do you do? Do you think to yourself, “Wow! He’s having a tough time. I’m glad that’s not me,” and walk away. Or, do you go up to him and say, “You seem to be struggling with this. Let me give you a hand.” A leader chooses the second option. Remember though, leadership is about guidance and support. You don’t want to criticize people, constantly correct other’s work or stick your nose into everyone’s business. When appropriate, ask if you can help. You want to build relationships through dependability and trustworthiness, not through unwanted interference. If you do this well, people will begin automatically seeking out your advice and assistance.
2. Practice Your Listening Skills
Many times in conversations, we are either patiently (or not so patiently) waiting for the chance to speak or thinking about what we are going to say next. As a result, we are not truly engaged in what the other person is saying. Luckily, everyone can work toward improving their listening skills. One method is to briefly restate what someone just said, before giving your response. This practice allows you not only to pay closer attention, but also to seek clarification in case you didn’t fully understand what someone else meant. Becoming a better listener provides numerous leadership advantages. You can express your genuine interest in other people and their ideas, see things from other perspectives and gain insights you otherwise might have missed.
3. Show Humility
Many people forget, leadership is ultimately about service. We usually associate leaders with perks and privilege, but in his book, Leaders Eat Last, Simon Sinek describes how in the U.S. Marine Corp, officers go through line last. A person who thinks they are more important than everyone else and has all the right answers is not a great leader. Respect other people; treat them well. Ask questions and share your knowledge. Admit when you are wrong and learn from your mistakes. Give credit to others where credit is due. And always put other people first.
Are You Looking for a Chance to Practice Your Leadership Skills?
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