Every organization, regardless of its size or the industry it operates in, needs an effective leader to run successfully. Skills such as analytical thinking, planning, and communication, for example, are crucial when putting teams together. By assessing individual strengths and weaknesses, the senior manager can delegate tasks more effectively and deliver instructions in a clear and precise manner, leading to improved productivity and better results.
This article will examine some of the most important leadership qualities to understand how they can help improve a team’s efficacy. And, if you are inspired to apply for a leadership position yourself after reading this, we have also included four great tips on how you can improve your leadership style. Ready to get that promotion?
Examples of leadership skills and why they are important
Ultimately, your experiences will shape you as a leader, and the specific skills you might need will vary from role to role, depending on your responsibilities. We’d be here for a very long time if we tried to list them all!
According to Indeed, the largest job website in the world, these six leadership skills are a must-have for anyone looking to advance their management career:
Sometimes, business decisions need to be made quickly, but that is not to say they should be impulsive. A good leader will consider all the available data before making an important decision, weighing up the pros and cons of different strategies before deciding which course of action to take. As you settle more into this role, you will find the decision process becomes more instinctive.
The ability to make effective judgment calls is an essential skill for a leader to have, because it helps them deliver their objectives, both personally and through the effectiveness of their teams.
Integrity doesn’t just mean being truthful, although honesty and transparency are also very important qualities for leaders to have. It means living and working by a set of unwavering values. In a work context, this might lead to the implementation of, for example, corporate social responsibility policies.
It is crucial for leaders to have integrity because it encourages fair and ethical practices and sets a positive example for team members to follow.
3. Team- and relationship-building
To assemble a team, you will need strong interpersonal, communication, and conflict resolution skills. These skills will help you assess which personalities will work well together, convey your expectations, and de-escalate any disagreements between colleagues. As you get to know each other, you will also learn each other’s strengths and weaknesses, making it much easier to allocate tasks to the right team members.
Even the best leaders can’t plan for everything. The mark of a good leader is someone who can respond to change and implement appropriate strategies to tackle unexpected problems. To do this, you will need experience, a cool head, and an analytical mind.
Strong problem-solving skills help leaders make tough decisions, as discussed in point one. Plus, if you can stay focused instead of getting sidetracked when something goes wrong, your team will do the same, and your project will never veer too far from its aims.
As a leader, your team needs to know that they can rely on you. And when you say you are going to do something, they have to be able to count on you to see that thing through.
Of course, as we have already seen, not everything in business always goes to plan, but a dependable leader is one who is capable of being straightforward and honest with their team. They will communicate any changes to the people they are working with as early as possible and give clear, logical reasons for their decisions.
Being a dependable leader is crucial to getting your staff to trust you and meeting deadlines on time.
6. Ability to teach & mentor
Taking the time to teach and mentor other staff members will really set you apart as a leader. Effective training will aid your colleagues’ professional development and help grow your organization, as employees will be ready to move into more senior positions. In order to deliver training to this standard, you will need to fall back on further leadership skills, including analytical thinking, interpersonal skills, and motivational speaking.
How to develop your leadership skills
You can practice and develop your leadership skills at any level. By showing up for meetings and delivering your work on time, you are demonstrating your dependability. And by behaving in a way that’s consistent with your employer’s values, you are showing them that you have integrity.
However, if you want to develop these skills even further, with the aim of being awarded an official leadership position within the business, here are four things you can do to help prepare yourself:
- Read up about good leadership skills. How to Win Friends and Influence People was written in 1934, but it’s still one of the go-to volumes for people looking to develop their leadership skills today. But these days, if you prefer, you can also consume media in other ways. Why not try listening to a podcast on the subject instead? Here’s a list of the best 5 podcasts for business leaders & leadership for you to listen to on your daily commute!
- Attend a leadership training course. There are plenty of good ones online, but try and find an in-person session or workshop if you can. In-person leadership training courses often involve elements of role-play, which will help you hone your newly developed skills before you put them into practice at the office.
- Find a leadership activity outside of work. If you are hoping to attain a leadership position at work, gaining some volunteer or social experience first will not only look great on your CV, but also give you the confidence you need to succeed when you inevitably get that promotion.
- Undertake further study. At EU Business School, all of our courses (at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels) are designed to help you develop all the skills you’ll need for a career in international business management. Discover the full range of programs on offer on our website.