Whether you are a service manager, sales manager, or business owner, you have chosen to lead. Leadership is a choice, not a position, so make sure you learn how to rock it! Here are a few leadership quotes to begin our conversation.
- “Don’t tell people how to do things, tell them what to do and let the results surprise you.” George Patton
- “Leadership has been defined as the ability to hide your panic from others.” Lao Tzu
- “The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good people to do what he/she wants done, and self-restraint to keep from meddling with them while they do it.” Theodore Roosevelt
- “Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because they want to do it.” Dwight Eisenhower
In order to be successful once you’ve chosen to lead you must be a creator not a processor. This requires vision to see what “can be” along with inspiration to attract others to help you to achieve your objectives. A mental image comes to mind of an orchestra conductor creating an environment where musicians want to work together harmoniously to produce the musical masterpiece you see in the vision.
This may sound simple but it’s not easy. There are many skill sets to continually tweak and fine-tune. Great leaders all share common characteristics which make them successful. I could discuss many realities which under-gird the behaviors and actions of leaders, but I’ll limit this post to five.
Inspiration Jump-Starts Motivation
Nobody can motivate someone else. Motivation comes from within a person. All the strategies and techniques in the world will fail if the folks aren’t jazzed up over the ideas being sold to them. Both the head and the heart must be in agreement. That’s why great leaders know the importance of inspiration, and that it can lead to motivation.
Collaboration Produces Results
Great leaders are wiser than to attempt to be a one-man-band. They inherently understand the team concept and that the best results come from pooling strengths and resources. Final solutions are always better supported when multiple participants have “skin in the game.”
If you want your employees to behave a certain way and display particular skills, then you must be willing to show them a picture of what that looks like. People respect leaders who have and model principles and values. Old Chinese proverb says, “If you show people what you want them to do, it greatly improves the chances they will do it.”
Leaders Believe Their People Can DO IT
Believing in the potential of people is critical when you are a leader. You must trust your employees to be competent in order to provide their piece of your organizational puzzle. When you believe, they will excel, if they are the right kind of folks.
Leaders Should Look in the Mirror
Before you grab the flag and charge the hill in your business, make sure you know who you really are. Shakespeare penned a line in Hamlet that’s relevant for all leaders. “To thine own self be true,” means to operate consistently by your own inner compass. You also need to recognize what you can and can’t do. By understanding yourself and your emotions, you will be a stronger leader for your team.
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