The subject of Leadership can be overwhelming to many; with so much research and so many theories, trying to identify, on a practical way, where to focus on to start improving our management and leadership skills is more than challenging.
As someone who developed his professional career managing and leading teams in highly dynamic environments, I'm sharing with you, in this video, five basic skills to start focusing on if you want to improve your results as manager or leader in your organization.
1. Create rapport and trust
2. Communicate expectations
3. Be a good listener
4. Provide effective feedback
5. Consider other people's opinions.
They are fundamental pillars that will serve you as a solid base to your leadership career.
Where are you at these 5 skills? How could you get better?
To your growth and success.
So, you want to improve your management and leadership skills, and you may be thinking “where do I start at?”
Because the subject of leadership is so huge that it may intimidate you. Every year over 1000 books are published about leadership alone. And, as we speak now, Amazon is offering more than 60,000 books with the word "Leadership" on their title.
So, the question remains valid: “Where do I start at, by improving my leadership and management skills?”
I was invited as a panelist to an event a few years ago, and the moderator asked us the following question: "What is new in the leadership area that organizations can implement to improve their results?
After to be thinking a little bit, I came with the answer in the line of ‘…organizations should focus on mastering the basics before trying to implement anything new”.
And the problem is that, today, most of the organizations are not working on mastering the basics.
So the purpose of today's video is presenting you here with five skills that are at that base, at the foundation of your leadership and management skills that you have to master. You have to look at how you keep improving them, because without them would be very difficult for you to achieve results as a manager or leader.
Skill #1: you have to learn to create rapport and trust with your team.
We're going to talk about trust for long after this video is finished, but now we will start with rapport. Rapport is knowing your team, and knowing each one of the persons working for you.
Not only professionally, but also at the personal level, because if our role as managers or leaders is facilitating our team's development for them to achieve good results, how can we help them if we don't know them?
So, the first thing is create this rapport to know the person behind the professional working with you. With that, you will be able to help at a much deeper level each one of the people working with you.
Skill #2: Communicate your expectations beyond the goals, beyond the KPIs.
Every organization have its own goals, its own KPIs that they measure every week, every month, every quarter, every year. But how, as a leader, would you like your team to achieve those KPIs? So you have your own expectations.
How do you expect them to behave?
How do you expect them to react, to help each other, to cooperate?
Don't let this at chance. Don't make them assume what you expect from them. Be clear and communicate your expectations.
And by communicating your expectations, they will eventually meet your expectations.
Skill#3: Listening without judgement.
Listening is one of the most critical skills any manager or leader should master. And, on the other hand, it's one of the skills, more difficult to master.
You can catch yourself, in many situations cutting people off or speaking over other people because you think you know what they are going to say.
By speaking, you just repeat what you know. By listening, you may learn many things that you don't know.
I like that quote, that goes,
"Leaders who don't listen eventually surround themselves by people who have nothing to say".
So, practice to be a good listener.
Skill #4: Provide effective feedback.
Feedback is the key to any development. You can see great athletes, artists, musicians...everybody is seeking for feedback, because by listening to feedback you will learn what you have to improve.
Same is in the organization. The only thing is that we don't know how to provide feedback.
So our feedback usually doesn't land properly and it's taken more as a criticism than a pure constructive feedback.
So we have to master the art of providing feedback that is motivating and inspiring to the person who is listening to it.
And, Skill #5: Be open and flexible to consider other people's ideas and opinions.
We all have had that type of manager who was never accepting any idea that was not his own.
Be open, consider other people's opinions and people will be open to share their opinions and their ideas with you.
I'm saying "consider other people's ideas". Not that you have to accept everything, but just give a thought about other people's ideas. And maybe you will question those ideas, and that will create the type of powerful conversations that you want to create in the organization.
So, here we have, these five skills that are the base of any good leader or manager.
That is, to learn to create rapport and trust with your employees. Second, communicate your expectations beyond the KPIs of the organization. Third, be a good listener. Fourth, deliver, or learn to deliver constructive feedback, and, Five, be open and consider other people's ideas and opinions.
I would challenge you to take these five skills and to rate yourself. Where do you think you are at?
Grading yourself between 1 and 10. One being very bad, horrible, and 10, one of the best in the world. Where you are at all of these five skills?
And on those where you think that you have a lot of things to improve, which are the actions, that one single action, that you can take this week to start improving on that skill that you think that will bring to you most of the benefits.
I would love to read your comments below. And if you think that this type of communication will help, please go ahead, subscribe below to our newsletter, and you will receive every month all the support, and ideas that you will need to become a great manager or leader in your organization.
Thank you very much for listening today. Take care.