Even if you are a good manager it doesn’t mean you are a leader. There is quite a difference between the two.
A true leader is a person that models behaviors that others are inspired to follow. Some people are natural leaders; others can train in leadership skills to become one.
If you are in a manager position that you have been working hard to achieve and maintain but you want to advance in your career, you might want to consider spending some time to investigate how to become a good leader.
We propose 4 interesting ways to make the transition from exceptional manager to outstanding leader. If you think you might need additional tips, feel free to take a look at this infographic.
1. Learn every day
Great leaders never stop learning. They take every opportunity they have to learn something new every day.
You can learn from your staff and customers alike. For example, by requesting feedback from your customers or clients you can learn if there is any areas where you can improve or modify.
Check in frequently with your staff, they might pass on some very useful information about the business that you are not aware of.
This is probably the most important leadership skill to become a good leader. Stop talking and ask questions to your colleagues and team.
If you are holding a meeting for example, instead of doing a long lecture style speech allow for long pauses and ask your team and colleagues if they have any questions or if they have any suggestions.
Respond in a meaningful way and target your answer to their specific questions. This will show them that you have been listening.
3. Empower others
By carefully listening to your staff you can get to know them on a more personal level. This will allow you to be aware of their strengths as well as passions.
Once you know your people you can empower their talent which in return will help them as well as the company and yourself to succeed.
Look for opportunities that will help your team shine and motivate them for personal growth and improvement.
4. Measure success
It’s very important for a good leader to recognize and reward employees for their hard work.
If you have no way of actually checking performance numbers but you see improvement in the business such as higher revenues or more customers/clients, that means your team is doing a good job.
Let them know. Knowing their hard work is paying off will give them the motivation to keep up with the effort.
There are great advantages in combining your excellent manager skills with leadership skills. Your business will certainly benefit from it.
Having a great trustworthy leader will motivate your employees to work harder and increase productivity.
In addition to this, if you value and listen to your staff they will feel they are worth it and will keep their spirits up. Being a successful leader does not happen in the blink of an eye. It takes time, a great effort and very hard work. If you have some time to spare you might also want to consider enrolling in one of the many management training courses now widely available online.
If you stick to your values, beliefs, and ethics and if you constantly follow these tips, you are guaranteed to succeed in becoming a great leader that your team will look up to.
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not of The HR Gazette or its team members.