Do you have the habits of a great leader?
Wednesday, August 2, 2023 - Joe Kiedinger
Everyone is a leader, no matter their role in the workplace. Certainly, those in the c-suite and management are considered leaders because they have people who report to them. But admins, HR pros, accountants, and sales reps are all leaders too. Why? Because they have influence in their area of expertise.
That’s why we hold all of our staff accountable to a LEADERSHIP acronym that we introduced at the start of last year. It’s been a great reminder and has inspired a series of internal learning sessions here at Prophit. Today, I want to share part of it with you! You’ll have to watch for my upcoming WOWs this August for the rest.
Habits of a Great Leader
If you close your eyes and picture a great leader in your head, what do you see? I think of someone up on a stage, giving a powerful speech that inspires. That’s why it might surprise you that the first habit on my list is listening.
To lead well, we often need to start by closing our mouths and hearing the perspective of the boots on the ground. It’s easy to get caught up in a high-level perspective of a business and be focused on your own initiatives. But the thoughts of other staff members are priceless.
One-on-one meetings are the best way to get the full picture. In group settings, often team members are lucky to express ¼ of their thoughts as people jockey for airtime. Prioritize time with your team to get their opinion on what’s going well, what’s not, and suggestions they have for the company or their own growth.
Want to be a great leader? Effective communication starts with listening.
It’s easy to confuse empathy with sympathy. So, let’s start there. Sympathy is feeling concern for someone who is going through a difficult time while empathy is actively sharing in the emotional experience with the person.
So, how can you be a more empathetic leader and how does that actually tie into the workplace?
Hey, we’re all human and as much as we’d like to just get work cranked out and head home, people do bring emotional baggage from home AND feel many emotions because of communication at work. Gone are the days of leave your baggage at home. We choose to do life together here by being real, getting to know each other, and supporting one another through life’s ups and downs.
Start each meeting with a round of “Good News” to have people share a bit about their lives. It’s an easy first step if you’re in a workplace where you typically just talk shop.
One of the behaviors that has helped Prophit Co. to succeed through 21 years in business is adaptability. My wife, Danica, and I are Fun Country and choose to ebb and flow through many opportunities that others would never consider. That’s how we were able to almost seamlessly transition from marketing to organizational health. That’s why something as unique as Leadership Adventures exists. Because we had a dream and went for it.
To become more adaptable at work, stop yourself when you get into a cycle of what ifs. You can what if yourself to death. Instead, ask yourself, “Why not?” Many of life’s perceived risks are not all that risky. And you’ll never know until you try. Challenge your team to do the same!
As an owner of a company, we are very generous and flexible with our team. And, just as we invest in them, we also hope that they will return our gift to them by investing in their role and in our company.
That means using their strengths to be the best they can be in their role, seeking opportunities for growth, always being on the look-out for ways to further the company and openly suggesting ideas when they come.
To set this habit in motion, instill it during all company (or department) meetings. Let your team know you value their ideas and want them to continue to grow!
These are only the first four habits of the LEADERSHIP acronym. More to come soon!
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