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Leading From Within ‒ Successful Leadership Starts With Simple People Skills And Practice

Written by: Sherry Buckley-Brown, 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.


Becoming a leader is one of the most rewarding yet challenging roles a person can set out to acquire. It requires a mix of skills, some of which you may already possess and some that you may need to develop further. Many of you may be natural-born leaders, and others may have to work a little harder to make it to a desired destination in a leadership role. But regardless of how many skills you have to learn or develop, three aspects remain constant: Successful leadership is acquired by leading from within, understanding people skills, and everyone is capable.

Business team working on a laptop computer.

Leading from within is a concept that has gained traction in the business world in recent years, and it can be an incredibly powerful, positive tool for achieving success. But what is leading from within all about? Well, it’s about leveraging the collective power of your employees or teammates to create a positive work environment that encourages collaboration and innovation. It involves tapping into your inner potential as a leader, developing a shared vision and setting goals that everyone can work towards while empowering your team to make decisions that are in everyone’s best interest.

And leaders who practice this newborn technique understand a few things. First, they understand the importance of engagement and creating an environment of trust and mutual respect. And secondly, they go the extra mile to understand each individual’s strengths and weaknesses so they can better leverage the collective power of their team to create an incredibly positive and productive environment.

To create this type of all-inclusive, positive environment, you have to do a couple of things, including getting to know people personally and understanding them immensely. This is not to say that you’re understanding and friendly (which are good traits to have), what we mean here is that you have to understand who your teammates are as individuals and know what motivates them to be the best version of themselves so that they have the opportunity to reach their unrecognized potential. This is where your people skills will come in handy.

Of course, people skills include getting to know individuals on a personal level, but it also includes the ability to be open to feedback and to show respect to those individuals and their opinions. When it’s all said and done, you have to be just as good of a listener as you require your team to be. In addition, you have to be open to change and willing to consider new ideas or critiques, and mix things up if necessary. And the level of respect you give will encourage a comfortable, trustworthy environment so all can thrive. Simple as it may seem, treating people how you would like to be treated creates a growth potential that is unimaginable.

So, how do the ability to lead from within and people skills come together? The combination of leadership ability and people skills is essential for successful teams and successful leaders. A leader must have the confidence, capacity to lead, and people skills to connect with and motivate their team. You can't have one without the other. People skills are necessary for effective communication and collaboration, and leadership ability is essential for providing direction and delegation. By understanding the importance of both qualities, leaders can better lead their teams to success.

When you lead from within and have the people skills to warrant success, you also have the power to help people recognize and unlock their true potential. By understanding each individual's unique strengths and talents, leaders with these traits can create an environment where everyone feels empowered to fulfill their dreams. This can lead to increased creativity, productivity, and overall happiness. In addition, leaders should strive to motivate and inspire those around them to reach their highest potential by providing guidance and support.

And to see people that you care about daily reach their potential is part of the rewards of being a successful leader. It may seem like a lot, and for some, it might be. However, everyone has the ability to discover their best self and be a guide for others. And if you're toying with the idea of a leadership role, here are some tips and tricks to help you get started.

Practice your people skills

As we’ve previously discussed, people skills are essential for a successful leadership role and having a good grasp on these skills can help you communicate, listen, empathize, motivate, and relate to people in ways that encourage them to work together. People skills involve building relationships, trust, and understanding with people, regardless of their background or experience. Leaders must be able to communicate effectively with and motivate their employees in order to foster an environment of collaboration and productivity.

Effective people skills can distinguish between a successful team and one that fails. They are essential for building strong, lasting relationships and can help leaders to create an environment where employees feel supported and valued, allowing them to reach their highest potential. These abilities are a must for anyone in a leadership role, as they are critical for creating an environment of success and growth.

Develop your vision

Developing a vision as a leader is key to success, as it acts as a roadmap for their team, providing them with a clear direction and purpose. Having an idea helps to motivate and inspire people and allows them to work together to achieve common goals. A vision also provides leaders with a platform for communication, keeping everyone focused and on the same page.

Having a clear vision creates a sense of trust and accountability, as everyone is working towards the same goal. Leaders can better anticipate organizational changes and stay ahead of the competition by utilizing this tool. And ultimately, having a clear and concise vision ensures that the team is successful and its goals are met.

Tap into your potential

Tapping into your potential as a leader helps maximize success in any endeavor. Being a leader is more than just having a title or position; it is about taking the initiative and inspiring others to reach their highest potential. As a leader, it is crucial to recognize your weaknesses and strengths and use them to your advantage. This means knowing your abilities and how to use them to motivate and guide others toward success. Also, taking the time to reflect on your potential and how you can use it to lead is essential to achieving your goals and positively impacting the lives of those you lead.

Understand the needs and motivations of your individuals

As a leader, it is vital to understand the needs and motivations of your individuals. It is important to empathize with them and respect their opinions. An effective leader should be able to identify the strengths and weaknesses of each individual and use that knowledge to create a productive and positive environment.

Additionally, a leader should strive to create a sense of unity and purpose within the team by engaging in meaningful conversations and activities. By understanding the needs and motivations of each individual, a leader can better facilitate relationships and foster an environment of cooperation and effort. Ultimately, when leaders take the time to understand the needs and motivations of their individuals, they can create a productive and positive team environment.

Develop a sense of trust

As a leader, developing a sense of trust with your team and individuals is one of the main components of success. Building trust requires a leader to be honest, reliable, and consistent in their words and actions. It also requires creating a safe space for open, direct communication and feedback.

You must work hard to show your team that you are approachable and genuinely care about their success. Encourage team members to take risks and be open to their ideas and perspectives. Most importantly, be trustworthy and follow through on your commitments. Creating a culture of trust will help your team feel more connected and motivated to work together to reach common goals.

Lead by example

Leaders need to lead by example, setting the standard for others to follow and reinforcing core values. For example, when an individual in a leadership role takes the initiative to show their commitment to the cause and actively participates in activities, it encourages others also to do their part. Additionally, leading by example shows respect for the team and demonstrates that the leader is just as invested in the organization's goals.

Lastly, leading by example sets a positive tone for the workplace and motivates employees to strive to reach higher levels of performance.

Encourage Creativity

As a leader, it is important to encourage creativity to unlock potential and spark innovation. Creativity is an essential component of progress, and it helps to break down the traditional boundaries that halt progress. It can also bring fresh ideas, perspectives, and solutions to the table that may otherwise not have been considered.

Creativity can foster a safe and productive environment where everyone feels empowered to think big and see what's possible. Ultimately, creativity is a crucial ingredient of success, so as a leader, it's essential to foster an environment where ideas can be discussed openly, and explored.

Show appreciation

Showing appreciation in leadership role is essential, and doing so sets an example of respect and encourages morale. Acknowledging good work and effort helps to create an environment of recognition and motivation, inspiring employees to do their best. S

Showing appreciation also strengthens relationships and builds trust. When you take the time to recognize your team's efforts, they feel valued and appreciated, leading to greater loyalty and commitment. Not only does showing appreciation help build a strong work culture and successful team, but it also encourages employees to be proud of their work and strive to do their best.

Clearly, there’s a lot to be considered when stepping into the world of leadership. There is an abundance of things to learn and an entirely different mindset to explore. And if there are any takeaways, it’s that you already possess the potential to do anything you set your mind to do.

You can be a leader. You already possess the ability to tap into unexplored talents that you may not know exist, and during this process, you’ll gain confidence and the ability to help inspire those around you. And you’ll do it so flawlessly that thinking outside the box will become a typical train of thought for innovation and problem-solving in your work life and your personal life. The door is there, waiting to be opened. So, go on in!

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Sherry Buckley-Brown, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Sherry Buckley-Brown is a Life and Leadership Coach that empowers individuals to recognize their natural born talents and skills. She uses tools and techniques to help you do a deep dive and put a plan of action in place to help you lead your authentic life. Sherry has faced many tragedies in her life and she has dedicated her life to helping others identify what is holding them back and get beyond STUCK. Sherry's famous quotes- "If Not Now Then When" "Life is Short". "Sooner Rather Than Later" . If you are ready for your next level, Sherry awaits your call.



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