Image via Pexels Guest Blogger Emma Grace Brown
What is a leader? Are there really born leaders? Are leaders self-made or forged in fire? Or, have they taken the time to learn the principles and ideals that turn ordinary men and women into people who inspire, motivate, and, lead from a place of positivity?
Martha Forlines wants to help you develop your skills as a positive leader. Here, we offer you a guide to understanding and avoiding the pitfalls that could send you off your leadership rails.
Can you take direction and criticism?
A business leader who thinks they know all there is to know will not stay a business leader for very long. Failure to accept and act upon critiques or new ways of doing things means people will no longer look to them as someone interested in moving forward. They will see that person as stubborn, or arrogant. In short, they will see them more as an impediment to success rather than as a guide to excellence. Always take time to listen. Everyone has something to say and there is no one we can’t learn something from.
Do you lack sufficient emotional intelligence?
People with a high levels of emotional intelligence can manage their own emotions to relieve stress, communicate effectively, empathize with others and, of course, lead others. Lacking a certain level of emotional intelligence doesn’t make you a bad person, but it does mean you’ll have a more difficult time dealing with your employees. Using a process that you can follow for something like conflict resolution is better than trying to navigate the problem yourself.
Are you adaptable?
Every successful business leader has learned the importance of adaptability. Adapting means being able to change when circumstances dictate, trying new ways of doing business when the old ways no longer work, and being open to different strategies. A good leader, like a good sailor, knows to adjust the sails when the winds change.
An important adaptation is knowing what style of communication to use with each of your employees. The The DISC assessment is a great tool for members of organizations to understand one another’s styles of communication. You can learn more about the DiSC assessment and its applications from the DISCy Chicks podcast.
Are you willing to commit?
Everything you have ever achieved in your life thus far is because you committed to making it happen. Many times, when we feel like we’ve achieved what we set out to do, we lose that commitment to keep alive and well that which we worked so hard to get.
If you want to commit to being a better leader, coach, and inspiration for your team, your employees, even your stakeholders, you may need a change of mindset. Start by teaching yourself the art of commitment with smaller goals like running every morning before work, taking a cooking class to learn how to make a particular dish, or committing to learning another language. You can also take on larger challenges, such as pursuing a degree online in your spare time. Continually expanding your skills and knowledge are part of the responsibility of a great leader.
You didn’t get to be a business leader without already possessing the knowledge and skill it takes to get there. Getting derailed is something you’ll want to be ever vigilant in guarding against. Investing in leadership coaching from Martha Forlines can help walk you past the pitfalls and dangers inexperienced leaders are prone to, and it can be one of the best guides you can take with you to grow as the leader you want to be.
About the guest blogger: Emma Grace Brown lives her life by her rules; and it works! When she's not snuggling puppies, Emma promotes female empowerment through her website. Her mission is to help those who live with self-doubt to realize they don't have to mold themselves to conventionality.