Whether you’re the director of your company or you have just taken on a new role with more responsibility, your leadership skills are going to be required and questioned daily.

Making the wrong choices can demoralize your team, decreasing productivity and potential career progression.

With that said, nobody is perfect. Becoming a leader is a learned skill which can take years of practice.

Here are 5 ways leaders can develop their skills:

1. Become Disciplined

A good leader needs to be disciplined both in their professional and personal life. In your professional life, you will need to turn up to work early and leave late. You will need to hit all of the deadlines set by upper management or your clients.

You will need to be organized. When you’re organized, you seem less flustered which adds to the image of you being calm and collected. 

In your personal life, you will want to eat healthily and workout to stay in shape. You may think your eating habits and activity levels are no one else’s business.

But if you’re a leader, being healthy and in shape will help keep you calm and confident, and that will affect your team’s performance as a result.

Remember that being a leader isn’t for everyone. Leaders are held to higher standards, even if these standards may not seem fair.

2. Be Passionate

Without passion, you have nothing. We have all had bosses that haven’t shown passion for their work. This rubs off onto other team members.  I’m sure many of you reading this have also experienced the opposite and have worked with some amazing leaders. 

Having a passionate boss can light a fire in team members. Having passion takes effort physically and mentally. 

Having a never give up attitude is a great way of setting you apart from others in the workplace. And it will inspire others to take on the same values.

3. Be Open to New Ideas and Admit When You’re Wrong

I’ll repeat a sentence from the first paragraph: Nobody is perfect.

Even the greatest leaders make mistakes. What separates a good leader from a bad one is the ability to admit fault.

I’ve made countless mistakes in my career and have made sure to learn from them. Next time you make a mistake, admit it and move on. Then ask yourself what you can do in the future to avoid making that mistake again.

Related:  Overcoming Resistance to Corporate Culture Changes

Often, discussing these issues with your team will bring everyone closer together.

If you work in a creative environment, this can also allow for more creativity to come from your team, as they know where they can push boundaries. And if they make a mistake, they can also learn from it.

Some of the greatest leaders that have helped me along my career have sat me down after making a mistake and have talked me through what went wrong, instead of berating me in front of the entire department.

Those leaders have shaped me and my career. I would still metaphorically ride into battle with them at a moments notice.

4. Keep Improving

Stagnation is a killer. If you want to become a well-respected leader, you should always be looking to improve your skills and learn new ones.

Learning new skills will keep your mind sharp. It also shows dedication to your team members. It allows you to take on new challenges from angles you may not have thought of in the past.

5. Don’t Shy Away From Conflict

Being a leader is not always about you. A leader will have to manage others. In a professional environment, you are going to have team members that clash often. As a leader, you will need to manage and resolve conflicts.

Some managers will choose to ignore conflicts and pray they go away on their own. In most cases, these problems grow and end up affecting the whole team. As a leader, you need to prevent that.

Address issues with each team member involved in private. And if the situation can’t be resolved amicably, you should look to rearrange your team members or move them on to different departments.

Related Article: 6 Steps for Conflict Resolution

Being a Leader Isn’t Easy

Being a leader isn’t easy, you are constantly under scrutiny and many failures will be blamed on you. With that said, one benefit of being a leader is being able to motivate an entire team to move in one direction towards a common goal.

Being a leader starts with you. If you can practice the tips above, you are already well on your way.

How Do You Develop Your Leadership Skills?

If you have ideas you feel like sharing that might be helpful to readers, share them in the comments section below. Thanks!

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Emma Jones
Emma Jones is the head of digital marketing at Storage Newport which is one of the fastest-growing self-storage companies in the UK. Emma heads up a team of 10 digital marketers and is constantly looking for new ways of motivating her team.
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