Not everybody is a natural leader, but it is possibly to improve on your leadership skills and become an excellent leader over time. Here are 5 secrets to becoming a better leader:
Accept the challenge of leadership
Leadership does not come easy. You can never please everyone, and you will always be held accountable. You will be held accountable for the bad things, and for the good things you always have to let your team shine. There are many fires to put out as a leader, like Gary Vaynerchuk said: “Last time I had to write down my occupation, I wrote down firefighter, because I seriously feel that is all I do, I put out fires for a living.”
Do not rely on quick fixes
Do not rely on getting problems fixed quickly and short-term, but focus on getting long-term fixes for the problems that occur. If you resort to quick fixes, it will always come back and bite you in the end when you have 50 other problems you have to look at.
Partner with like-minded people
Surround yourself with people you and others consider great leaders, observe, learn and ask questions. Be humble enough to show that you are learning the craft of leadership. We are the average of the five people we hang out the most with. With this rule of thumb in mind, you will carefully choose who you want to have in your circle. This might mean being alone for a while until you find the right group of people.
ALWAYS establish two-way trust
Whenever you are in a conversation, meeting or any other event – establish a mutual trust between everyone around you. This way you can get things done faster, many people focus on getting other things done, and then work on the trust. This should be the other way around, gain the trust then get stuff done.
Be open to new ideas
Be adaptable. Environments, markets and people are in a constant state of change. As the Greek philosopher stated: “The only thing that is constant is change.”
This holds even truer in the age of social media and technology. Never be close-minded about ideas and try new things.
Being a great leader means being able to accept challenges while being adaptable and a trustworthy source of information. It means that people can rely on you to come up with final game-plan and sometimes it even means taking heat for something your team did rather than yourself. This is all part of the game. Remember: Accept the challenge of leadership.
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