Courageous leaders are in short supply these days. Being a bold, confident, and courageous leader can set you apart during a time when hiding behind a computer or espousing political correctness is popular. It’s not easy of course - whether it’s having a difficult conversation, communicating when you don’t have all the answers, or making a decision to move ahead. Many people would rather stay under the radar and see what happens – true leaders will step up and make things happen!
Here are some leadership characteristics that will set you apart:
Confront reality head-on. Face the reality of how your business performs. Only by knowing the true current state can you lead to better outcomes.
Ask for feedback and listen. Feedback is sometimes difficult to hear, but if you listen and react positively, people will follow your example.
Tell it how it is. Some discussions can be uncomfortable, especially if conflict is involved. Have the courage to put your opinions on the table, even if they are unpopular.
Encourage debate. No one has all the answers, including you. Use your team and their ideas to assist your decision making.
Don’t allow performance issues to fester. Confront ‘people issues’ head on, take strong and timely action to improve or exit under-performing employees. Others will take notice!
Communicate. Don’t use acronyms or jargon. Use straight talk and share information – don’t hold it to yourself! Communicate in all directions, all of the time.
Change will occur. Always seek a better way, a better plan, a better solution and bring people along for the ride, ensuring they understand their part in changing your business for the better.
Make decisions and action them. Progress is better than standing still – make the decisions and ensure actions occur.
Praise others. Give the credit for better outcomes or improved performance to those around you. Don’t be that person that needs praise or takes credit on behalf of others.
Be accountable and expect that of others. Expect people to perform and have the courage to deal with them when they don’t. Hold yourself to account by delivering the standards and behaviours you expect from others.