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10 Ways To Be A Better Leader

Written by: Tomas Svitorka, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

 

How would you describe a good leader? Someone who inspires confidence, someone who makes decisions without being swayed by emotions or pressure, and someone who leads by example.

wood concept of a good team leader.

A good leader has the ability to inspire trust and loyalty in his/her team members. They also possess strong communication skills and the ability to motivate. Leaders should always strive to improve themselves through self-reflection and learning new things. The key to becoming a better leader lies in developing leadership qualities such as empathy, integrity, honesty, humility, and respect. If you are a CEO, manager, business owner, coach or mentor, you are a leader. In this article, I'll share ten ways that will help you be a better leader.

1. Be Passionate


Great leaders aren't just focused on getting others to complete tasks. They have a genuine passion and excitement for the projects they're working on. A leader isn't always the most talented or experienced person in the room, but they are able to motivate others because they show up every day with a clear vision for what needs to happen next. Great leaders don't focus solely on completing tasks but also on helping everyone involved understand why those tasks matter and why it matters to them. Passion is contagious. And, as a leader, having a passionate team makes everyone perform better.

2. Be a good listener


Who doesn’t want to be heard? A good leader values the input from his or her team members and wants to know what makes each one tick. In fact, research suggests that people are most likely to trust someone who listens to them. Hand in hand with empathy and leading by example, a good manager seeks out feedback from employees and takes action on the information he receives. He wants to help them set and achieve career objectives and ensure that everyone feels valued, respected, and appreciated. Will you always agree? Of course not, but showing you care about others by genuinely listening and acting upon the feedback you receive will earn you enormous amounts of respect and loyalty. This goes beyond just being empathetic and understanding; it demonstrates you actually care about their well-being.

3. Be self-aware


Self-awareness is one of the most important skills to be effective as a leader and continually grow. As a leader, you must constantly evaluate yourself and ask yourself tough questions about your strengths and weaknesses. This will help you make better decisions and improve your leadership style. If you don't know where you stand, how can you lead others?

Practice self-awareness with a regular reflection on your performance, communication, connection with the team, influence, feedback, and overall morale.

4. Keep an eye on your emotions


As a leader, it's important to maintain a level head during tough times. When things go wrong, it's tempting to react emotionally. You might feel like you have to prove to yourself that people are judging you unfairly. However, taking a step back and keeping your emotions under control helps you make better decisions. If you're too emotional, you'll make poor choices and miss out on opportunities. And if you overreact, you could end up hurting others unnecessarily.

5. Communicate your expectations clearly


Effective leaders communicate clearly and consistently about what needs to happen, how it should be accomplished, and why it matters. They set specific goals and expectations for themselves and others, and they measure progress against those goals. When things go wrong, they don’t blame people for mistakes; they acknowledge them, learn from them, and move forward. Communicating expectations effectively helps ensure everyone understands what is expected of them, and it gives them a sense of control over their work. This increases motivation and productivity because people feel like they have ownership over their work. On the flip side, when expectations are vague or unrealistic, people often become confused and disheartened. Employees lose confidence in their ability to succeed, and morale plummets.

6. Encourage autonomy


How much autonomy do you give to your team? One of the most common complaints employees have about their managers is that they are being micromanaged. Not only it's frustrating and has a detrimental impact on confidence, but it's also very demotivating. More importantly, micromanaging trains people not to try to put in their own initiative, find solutions to problems, and be creative. On the other hand, research suggests that autonomy helps us achieve our goals better because we feel more satisfied with our job and we perform better. Furthermore, when people are given the opportunity to make their own decisions, they tend to be happier in general. Learn to trust your team and encourage autonomy.

7. Know how to Influence others


Influence may sound like a "black hat"skill because we have it often associated with manipulation. In the reality, it's a skill of persuasion we all use every day, may it be when you're passionately talking about a TV show your friends should watch or trying to convince your partner that your running shoes definitely need replacing.


As a leader, you're constantly influencing and persuading others. This may come in the form of project direction, pitching, or running meetings. If you don't know how to influence others well, you'll probably do it badly.

8. Tailor your leadership style when needed


It's important to know your leadership styles, but it's just as important to be able to adapt them to suit the unique personalities of your employees. If you can adapt to your teammates' needs, you'll be better able to solve their issues and connect with them. And if you can do both, they'll feel comfortable enough to open up and share their thoughts and ideas with you.

9. Give direct feedback


If you want to be respected as a leader, you must be able to give direct feedback. This means negative as well as positive.

When giving negative feedback, avoid "fluffing" around and sugarcoating the matter. Clearly explain what is not correct and what needs improvement. Importantly, make it about the topic, not the person. People appreciate honesty and directness. When giving positive feedback, be specific about what has been done well and why. Remember, behavior that gets rewarded gets repeated.

10. Ask for feedback so you can become a better leader


Leaders who ask for feedback are leaders who listen. Leaders who listen are leaders who learn. And leaders who learn are leaders who grow. When you're leading others, it's important to understand where they're coming from. Ask them questions about themselves and their experiences. This helps you understand their needs and desires, which makes it easier to lead them effectively. Feedback is one of the most powerful tools available to leaders. But asking for feedback isn't just about getting information; it's about learning something valuable. So ask yourself: What would I need to improve upon to become a better leader? Then take action to address those areas. If you're not already receiving feedback from your team members, consider setting up regular meetings to discuss issues and concerns. These meetings should include everyone involved in the project, including managers, supervisors, and anyone else who has input into the process. By regularly gathering feedback, you'll gain insight into what works well and what doesn't work at all. You'll also identify any problems before they escalate into bigger issues. And finally, you'll find out whether your leadership style is working for your team. In conclusion, being a leader means different things to different people. For me, leadership is about helping others succeed by providing guidance and support. It's about leading by example. And it's about inspiring others to reach their full potential. So when you think about what makes a good leader, ask yourself what kind of person you want to be. What qualities would you like to see in a leader? How can you lead by example? How can you inspire others to greatness? Think about those questions and you'll soon realize that being a leader isn't just about giving orders; it's about creating an environment where others feel empowered to grow and thrive.


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Read more from Tomas!

 

Tomas Svitorka, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Tomas is a peak performance coach, business mentor, speaker, and award-winning entrepreneur. He is the founder of the OK is NOT enough coaching method and the Unbreakable Self-Discipline Bootcamp. He’s highly passionate about helping ambitious professionals and entrepreneurs achieve the highest level of personal and professional performance.


Tomas has built his reputation by coaching hundreds of clients, including industry leaders, billionaire entrepreneurs, Silicon Valley CEOs, rising stars in global corporations, and influencers at the top of their game.


Tomas has been interviewed in dozens of podcasts, including The Unconventionalists, and has been featured in various publications such as The Guardian, GQ, Virgin Media, Coach Magazine, and Vice.

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