Anyone can sit in the best cabin of the office, assign tasks, and assess employee performance. On the other hand, only a leader understands how to impact his employees, offering the greatest service possible. An effective leader plays a major role in an organization’s success and employee growth and development. Following things can help you become the most effective leader you can be.
1. Know Your Leadership Style
It is important to learn your strengths and weaknesses and your overall personality to determine which leadership style suits you most. You can take quizzes and consult your peers, which can help find your leadership style. It can be autocratic, authoritative, democratic, laissez-faire, a combination of two or more, or others.
You must also know that your leadership style must conform with your organizational structure and how your bosses want you to lead your team. For instance, you cannot have a laissez-faire style in a corporate structure where business decisions are taken under a specific framework.
2. Be a Leader, Not a Boss
A great leader considers the benefit of employees while the boss manages his workers. To be a leader, you must show your workers what you and the organization need to meet the goals. That requires teaching them rather than just telling them what to do.
You should coach the employees to prove to be the company’s assets and not people who ‘do’ the assigned task. Be a role model for your workers. Do things and follow the path as you want your followers to do.
3. Continue To Learn
The business world is changing, and so are the employee behaviors and needs. Not all organizational structures are based on the same old, traditional models. So, to become an effective leader, you must stay updated, which requires constant learning.
Suppose you work in education, HR development, or social work. In that case, you can enroll in an educational leadership master’s program. You can attend seminars on leadership, complete certifications, and participate in leadership games. These increase self-awareness which identifies your position in the modern workplace setting while providing opportunities to enhance your skills.
4. Stay Positive
A great leader knows the importance of keeping a positive attitude and not losing the edge in challenging situations. Staying positive requires having a positive attitude and behavior while uplifting others.
You can make demands but never do anything that can demean anyone. You need to focus on the strengths of people and milestones achieved. For a leader, many things can become a problem. Still, it would help to always look for solutions rather than get stuck on their adversities.
5. Engage in Efficient and Honest Communication
Research shows that over 90% of managers lack primary communication skills. To be a good leader, you must possess great communication skills. It will help if you occasionally communicate with all team members, listen to their concerns and suggestions, and deliver your message properly. Your communication must inspire and motivate others.
For knowing your place as the leader, efficient communication is significant in informing your followers about your vision and goal and supporting them where required. When communicating with your followers and other stakeholders, you must be honest about everything.
6. Set Goals for Everyone
To make it simple, you can categorize your employees/followers as per their skills, experience, potential, or role in the organization. Goals can be set for each category for individual growth and development, and inform employees of your expectations from them. As they recognize their personal growth, their engagement in the organization will rise.
Keep assessing these roles, and if required, change them to let people know that you are present and care about them.
7. Maintain an Open-Door Policy
Many say that an open-door policy is a lazy leadership. But is it so if people know that they can easily interact with their leader and feel valued in the team? The open-door policy means that the offices of the superiors of an organization are always open to everyone, and appointments are not required to talk and discuss things.
An open-door policy fosters a culture of mutual trust between leader and employees, minimizes the communication gap, and provides a platform for raising concerns.
8. Offer Rewards
Recognizing the efforts of people who work for you is key to effective leadership. You should practice telling people how valued they are and, from time to time, appreciate their constructive roles in the organization. Establishing a reward system can motivate the workers and boost their morale for better performances and innovation.
A survey by Incentive Marketing Association shows that 65% of people prefer non-cash rewards. Therefore, you can offer outstation trips with spouse or family, movie tickets, or simply awarding the employee/volunteer of the month awards.
Every person has a different personality, due to which there are many leadership styles and strategies. Becoming a good leader undoubtedly takes time. Some may naturally have these skills but still need to enhance them to keep up with the changing cultural and managerial trends. Following these steps can assist in optimizing your overall leadership style and behavior, which will eventually benefit your staff.