>Leadership Ain’t for Dummies! My former Psychology teacher would disown me for using “ain’t” in my speaking and blogging, however, if one steps back and really analyzes the idea, it’s true! It IS NOT for dummies (better, Mr. Fleming?) As a leader, it is my heartbeat to help create more, even better leaders than myself.
I have recently passed the torch in a position I was voted into about six years ago as the Ladies Department Secretary for the state of South Carolina United Pentecostal Church. I learned a couple of things (LOL) during the course of my tenure. Perhaps the primary lesson was that a position doesn’t necessarily mean you are a good leader. Some folks simply ride the title wave. They covet the title,
but do not want to do the hard things leaders have to do to be a good leader.
Foremost, a good leader has to look inward to the tough issues they have maybe hidden deep down. If we do not understand ourselves, how then can we possibly understand those around us? A good leader will surround himself or herself with those who have strengths they do not possess and weaknesses they need to recognize and maybe even reveal, but not magnify. Everyone wants to be successful in their business, home and social lives. In order to enjoy that success we must maximize the strong points of others and help those weak ones around us to realize their hidden strengths.
I understand very well that this concept completely goes against many success secrets out there in the business world today. It’s a tough, cut-throat society! The secret to the success of many is climbing the ladder and turning off any emotion that would prevent you from climbing across others to get to the top. Only problem with that concept is those leaders with that mindset rarely enjoy a lengthy stay at the top.
Here are five points to help you hone your leadership skills. Hold on, it may become a very bumpy ride. Do you have what it takes to do the hard stuff?
1. Embrace the idea that others have ideas too! One way of getting involvement by others & much needed help for you & the goals you set is to listen to the ideas of others.
2. ADMIT that you are not ALWAYS right and realize that NOT EVERYONE THINKS LIKE YOU DO. Others cannot read your mind… they’re not IN your head. You have to communicate your expectations. When problems arise, sometimes the simple act of saying “I was wrong” will cause those who are following to respect you even more.
3. Empower those around you by delegating. No one died and made you God, so realize you can’t do it all yourself. Involve others who may not do the job as
proficiently as you, but still get the job done AND YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO IT! You may be in the position at a later date to share what you would have done to improve their work. Let the ones you are responsible for know that you believe in their abilities. Use positive, uplifting words of encouragement. Be excited & it will be contagious.
4. Show a spirit of thankfulness to those around you. Always stress that the goal was reached by each individual effort. Give verbal accolades as much as possible to everyone around you. No one knows the importance of the garbage man or the cleanup person until they are out for a few days!
5. Be honest with yourself and get rid of dead weight (even if it is your own negative thoughts) Surround yourself with people who will add to you and your goals. Not that we should only associate with people who make us look good… that is not the idea here. Simply, put: Avoid those naysayers who are consumed with negativity. Their negative energy will eat away at your entire group, one by one if it ever gets a foot in the door. Negative people will frustrate you on a constant basis until you find a way to weed them out of the leadership picture.
These have been the leadership tools I have used most in my toolbox. I hope they will help you go from an average leader, to a GREAT one.