Most people think companies achieve success because of the strategy that they come up with. While that is true to some extent, strategy is one part of a whole range of reasons but not the only reason for success. Among other things, leaders play a huge role in the success of an organization. We talk about some of the common traits of a good leader.
Leaders are in a position to be the difference between a dull and a super-performing team. They not only set the direction of their teams but also the mood. Each leader has their own unique style, methods to manage the team such as compassion and integrity, or other skills learnt through formal training and experience. These qualities inspire trust and respect of the team and stimulate production within the workplace.
Having said that, many a leader have been known to possess some MUST HAVE qualities that make them stand apart from the mediocre. Traits that make them highly effective. It’s no mean job to be a front runner… it’s edgy, just as much as hanging from a cliff! Let’s see what this acronym CLIFF stands expanded for, as the major traits of a leader.
Communication & Listening:
Successful leaders value purpose, they know it can inspire an extraordinary performance from their team members. The first & foremost responsibility of the managers is to articulate the WHY behind the work that the team is doing. Once the team sees their WIFM (What’s in it for me), their sense of ownership attains a new high. Good verbal and written communication skills are necessary as they allow leaders to present expectations to team members in a way they can understand. Listening is an inherent, integral and most vital part of communication. Any great leader understands and gives a lot of impetus to listening to what everyone has to say. Leaders put more emphasis on listening than speaking because they want their employees to voice out their opinion. This is a great way to increase employee engagement. It shows that their suggestions are valued and appreciated.
Leaders can never be complacent about their knowledge and skills in this competitive environment. They are always aware that their ability to lead people, their aspirations needs to grow and change with the times. They always seek to learn new concepts in psychology, management methodologies to apply them to greater effect. Ask some of today’s leading personalities and they will come up with his ‘To Read Wishlist’ in less than a minute probably.
Inspire and motivate:
There is a difference between being a leader of the team and leading the team. To be effective you have to lead from the front. Leaders need to inspire extraordinary performances from their co-workers. Ordinary leaders order whereas outstanding leaders inspire! Most of the times this ability to inspire stems from their ability to build a positive rapport with the co-workers.
Leaders who inherently want to better themselves often end up extracting best out of their teams. Their willingness to give as well as get feedback from the people around them to improve themselves leaves a lasting impression on their team members. Formal or informal feedback, they wouldn’t care as long as it is constructive enough. This shows the employees that their leaders are paying attention to them and they appreciate any insights along the way.
Fun & celebration:
And lastly, some leaders encourage their teams to follow the old adage: Work hard, party harder. They don’t wait for shot at the moon occasions to celebrate. When the Fun quotient in the team is high, the team is bound to operate with synergy. They are aware of the uplift that frequent celebrations bring, however small these wins might be. Vital to this behavior is the genuine belief of these leaders that they are only as good as their team.