As leaders, it should be our goal to become better and more effective leaders. In order to do this, you must possess the integrity to conduct periodic self-evaluations to identify your strengths and weaknesses. You may confirm for yourself that you are an excellent leader with high a level of leadership effectiveness. If this is the case, that’s great! If you discover that you have weaknesses that could be negatively affecting your ability to lead, don’t worry! We all have room for growth and there are actions we can take to improve our leadership ability, thereby increasing our leadership effectiveness. Here are just a few:
1. Treasure your experiences – Don’t lose the opportunity for growth when you have experiences; good or bad. We can learn a lesson from every experience. Many people make the mistake of looking beyond their past experiences, especially the negative ones. Confucius says, “Study the past, if you would divine the future.” Ultimately, it is up to us to evaluate our past experiences, take away the lessons learned and move on without allowing that experience to form our future.
2. Invest in your growth – If you really want to take your leadership ability to the next level, you must be willing to invest in yourself. You can read books from your favorite leadership gurus. If you don’t have any, this will be your implied task. Find a couple leadership experts to follow and start building your reading catalog. There are too many to name, but here are some: John C. Maxwell, Anthony Robbins, Zig Ziglar, W. Clement Stone and Napolean Hill. This should be enough to get you started. You should also regularly attend seminars, workshops and mastermind groups live and/or online. Doing this on a regular basis will add to your library of knowledge. The more you know, the more you can share with the people you lead, thereby empowering them and helping them grow.
3. Get a mentor or coach – Every great leader has a mentor or a coach to help them along in their career. No leader has ever become great all by themselves. Having a mentor or coach can expose you to the opportunities to experience exponential growth professionally and personally. Remember! There is a distinct difference between a coach and a mentor. Coaching is performance-driven, task-oriented and is usually short-term and structured in a more formal environment. Mentoring, on the other hand, is an informal alliance focused on building a two-way, mutually beneficial relationship for long-term career development.
These 3 actions are a great place for anyone to start for leadership growth. If followed, they will allow you to experience an incredible amount of growth in your leadership ability. Always remember this! The one thing we all must know about leadership is that there is no one thing to know about leadership. Becoming a great leader is a life-long commitment to growing and learning. Great leaders always empower, enable and enhance everyone in their sphere of influence - including themselves.