The start of a new year is a time when we might consider the idea of bettering ourselves. For leaders giving consideration to improvements is particularly important for the sake of their own personal and professional development, and also for their teams and the business of which they are part. We might think about things like: how will I boost my chances of success, how will I inspire others or how will I steer the business towards greater success? It’s certainly not enough to simply ‘decide’ to better oneself in general terms.
To become a better leader in 2021, will require a systematic, well laid out action plan that includes problem identification, self-evaluation and a final resolution. This holistic approach will incorporate all aspects of leadership in business to drastically improve your leadership stance. Rather than an immediate transformation, the process of becoming a better leader is one of gradual, effective progression.
Here are five tips to become a better leader in 2021.
1. Know Yourself
The process of self-evaluation is imperative to grow as a leader. Highlight specific areas of yourself that you deem necessary to improve. This can either be achieved through self-analysis and/or by asking for honest opinions from respected co-workers. Note them down and then decide how to best improve on those areas in the coming months.
2. Establish Effective Communication and Connection
Effective communication is the key to masterful leadership. Leaders who fail to establish relationships based on mutual understanding and trust are at a disadvantage to those who do. Poor communication can result in team members harbouring negative feelings of confusion and resentment. Terry St. Marie indicates that a more “human” leader is a friend of the team and a role model to those who will strive to impress them. More human, in this case, means exercising love, understanding, care and genuine empathy for your people. Talk and listen more to your team members this year. See how it works out.
3. Know your team members
Use your ability as a leader to understand your team and those who support you, to gauge what their motivations, strengths and gaps are. Take this a step further and get to know them on a more personal level, making the effort to express an interest in them as individuals, learning more about their interests, talents and aspirations. This knowledge will make it easier to delegate projects and tasks for more positive results.
4. Show Rather Than Say
Ineffective leaders believe more in directing rather than demonstrating. In some situations this may be the best answer, however a better leader will demonstrate what they ask of their team members. This brings about excellent outcomes and a better working environment for everyone.
5. Ask For Feedback
Feedback should form a vital part of any leader’s quest for self-improvement. To assess the efficacy of your techniques, ask for honest opinions from those around you. These insights will help shape a new perspective on what works and what doesn’t and award you with a critical perception of how people view you as a leader.
Tania Watson is the founder of Creative Coaching and an executive coach, organisational consultant and leadership specialist. Creative Coaching is a successful company dedicated to the development of senior leaders in organisations through one to one coaching, intact team development and group facilitation. If you or someone from your organisation would like to have a no obligation conversation about how Creative Coaching may be able to help, please email Tania directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.