By John Todorovic
Do you think that there’s a need for a person to change, in order to succeed?
Do you believe that change is possible?
We all go through many changes in life and they are all for the better and would help us grow as people in the future.
Someday, you will get in the position where you will be a department head, supervisor or manager, where you will need to lead a team of people. For you to be able to lead, you need to understand what leadership is and how it works. Your role will be to create the conditions that encourage team members to become motivated and to empower them.
According to Vince Lombardi, “Leaders aren’t born. They are made.” Leadership is a skill that is acquired. Something Learned is not remembered after several years gone by, but something acquired lasts a lifetime.
In the not-too-distant past, a supervisor or manager might simply have told an employee what to do. If the work was done, employees generally considered the supervisor or manager a good leader. Today however, changes in the workplace and changes in employees’ perceptions of the supervisor’s or manager’s role have made this method less useful.
In today’s workplace, leadership and supervision suggest the need to guide and influence—rather than to order—employees to undertake specific actions. The role of the supervisor or manager is fast becoming that of a facilitator and coach compared to the “taskmaster” of yesterday.
The manager who is flexible—able to select a style that is comfortable to work with and appropriate for the employee and the situation—will likely be better able to provide an environment within which motivation can take place.
How can you begin your leadership journey? You need to start developing habits through discipline and daily routines. Do you think you can do it? Look yourself in the mirror and say: “I can do it!”
Developing a Leader Within
Here’s a simple way to develop those habits:
- Be a brave leader
- Be a determined leader
- Be a humble leader
- Be a trustworthy leader
- Be a servant leader
It’s not easy being a leader. You will encounter moments where you will need to make tough decisions. There will be times where you won’t know what to do. Regardless of the situation, your people will need you to be at your best. To do that, you need to be brave!
Fortunately, bravery can be practiced. The more challenges you take on, no matter how difficult they may be, you will get braver and it will become easier to handle them.
Next time, when you encounter a difficult situation, don’t walk away from it. Step out of your comfort zone and face it head on. The best way to practice it is to embrace and confront things that you’ve been avoiding.
Do you want to be a brave leader?
You can be a brave leader, but you also need determination. You can’t accomplish great tasks without the ability to keep going no matter what. Sometimes, determination is more important than fortune or talent.
If you are not able to continue when things get rough, you will not get far as a leader. Always look forward, keep your promises and follow through on your commitments.
Do you want to be a determined leader?
Being a knowledgeable and competent leader is a virtue, but knowing what you don’t know and admitting it is a virtue as well. Humble leaders don’t pretend that they know everything. They seek advice and rely on their team to make smarter decisions.
If you want to work on and develop this habit, observe your responses during conversations. Work on engaging people with humility. Listen, read, become more open minded. Provide credit where credit is due, praise your team and thank them for their expertise.
Do you want to be a humble leader?
Leaders are there to influence and coach people. If your team can feel that you are genuine and that they can respect you, they will be more than willing to follow you. Your challenge is to influence people correctly.
If you gain trust of your team, you can influence them in a positive manner. Once you get your team’s trust, they will open up and share information with you. Therefore, you must be approachable.
Trust is a two-way street. As a leader, encourage feedback among your team. Ask them for their opinion and receive their answers with an open mind.
Do you want to be a trustworthy leader?
The term “Servant Leadership” originated in the 1970’s book “The Servant as Leader” by Robert K. Greenleaf. Even though this concept dates back to ancient philosophy, we can find it throughout the history.
Leader who has a natural desire to serve first can be defined as a servant leader. Out of that desire to serve comes the aspiration to lead. This type of a leader puts other people first and serves their needs.
As a servant leader, you should focus on the growth and well-being of your team. You empower individuals and delegate responsibilities. This doesn’t mean that you give away all responsibilities. You are just focusing on the promotion of satisfaction and performance of your team.
This way of leading people highlights team collaboration, empathy and proper use of authority. Teams under a servant leader generally perform better and provide greater results.
Do you want to be a servant leader?
Taking the Initiative
The leadership journey is filled with challenges. Some of you will encounter struggles during this important transition. I challenge you to face these struggles and challenges, because if truly dedicate yourself, you will never be alone.
Do you believe that you can become a leader? If you do, stand up from your chair, get out of bed, or move from wherever you’re reading this article from, and say: “I will be a leader!”
Tomorrow morning, when you get up, go to the nearest mirror and look into it. Who do you see? Who would you like to see? This starts with a positive mindset. You can only succeed if you believe you can succeed. Create good habits and get rid of the bad ones. Surround yourself with positive people.
Do you know what will be your biggest obstacle? YOU! How do you overcome the biggest obstacle? Be honest to yourself. Admit and embrace your flaws. Find and enhance your strengths. Just because you are in a certain position, it doesn’t mean that the learning stops. Open your mind to new knowledge.
Most importantly, have fun! If you are not enjoying what you do, you’re in the wrong position. One of my favorite authors and motivational speakers, Simon Sinek said: “Working hard for something you don’t care about is called stress. Working hard for something you love is called passion.”
If you accept and take this endless journey of self-improvement, it is not only you who will benefit from it. This journey will provide advantage in life for everyone around you. Those who are willing to jump in and help others will have new opportunities presented to them. These new opportunities will provide you with valuable knowledge that you can transfer to others. Remember, sharing the knowledge is a privilege and an obligation.
Sometimes you will find out what you are supposed to do by doing things you’re NOT supposed to do. That means, be ready for failures, but don’t be afraid of them because if you don’t fail, you’re not even trying.
Becoming successful person and a successful leader requires risk. Don’t be afraid to succeed. My friends, future leaders, do you believe that you can succeed? If you believe you can, stand firmly and say: “I will succeed!”