What Makes an Effective Leader
Effective leaders have the ability to communicate well, motivate their team, handle and delegate responsibilities, listen to feedback, and have the flexibility to solve problems in an ever-changing workplace.
Employers seek these skills in the candidates they hire for leadership roles. Strong leadership skills are also valuable for all job applicants and employees because they can lead to workplace success.
Whether you’re starting out in an entry-level position and looking to move up the career ladder or you’re seeking a promotion, your leadership skills will be among your most valuable assets.
Workplace Success Leadership Skills
Here are some leadership skills that can help lead you to workplace success.
As a leader, you need to be able to clearly and succinctly explain to your employees everything from organizational goals to specific tasks. Leaders must master all forms of communication, including one-on-one, departmental, and full-staff conversations, as well as communication via the phone, email, video, chat, and social media.
Leaders should establish a steady flow of communication between themselves and their staff or team members, either through an open-door policy or regular conversations with workers.
A large part of communication involves listening. Leaders should make themselves regularly available to discuss issues and concerns with employees. Other skills related to communication include:
- Active listening
- Facilitating group conversations
- Public speaking
- Reading body language
Leaders need to inspire their workers to go the extra mile for their organizations; just paying a fair salary to employees is typically not enough inspiration (although it is important too). There are a number of ways to motivate your workers: you may build employee self-esteem through recognition and rewards, or by giving employees new responsibilities to increase their investment in the company.
Leaders must learn what motivators work best for their employees or team members to encourage productivity and passion. Skills related to effective motivation include:
- Allowing employee autonomy
- Asking for input
- Open to employee concerns
Leaders who try to take on too many tasks by themselves will struggle to get anything done. These leaders often fear that delegating tasks is a sign of weakness, when it actually can be a sign of a strong leader.
Therefore, you need to identify the skills of each of your employees, and assign duties to each employee based on his or her skill set. By delegating tasks to staff members, you can focus on other important tasks. Some skills that make a good delegator include:
- Allotting resources for employees
- Assessing employee strengths and weaknesses
- Defining expectations