How to Develop Your Leadership Skills to Build a Strong Team?
Over time, as you grow up the corporate ladder, and as you begin to lead a team of people, a question begins to stare you in the face: How can this team be motivated to produce remarkable performance consistently?
The answer to this question really has to come from you. Indeed, your team’s performance is directly proportional to how good a leader you are.
Table of Contents
- Why employee referrals are betterUnderstanding leadershiprecruitment quality
- What leading a team entails
- Know your people
- Constantly champion the team’s goals
- Communicate transparently and effectively
- Talk about health and wellness regularly
- Sharpening your leadership skills
- Spend quality time with your family
- Learn a new skill
- People Also Ask
Leadership is not about titles and positions. It is not about being the boss. Simply, leadership is how you see a situation and how you act on it. Noel Tichy, the renowned management thinker, defined leadership as “the ability to see reality and mobilize the appropriate response”.
So, if you must have your team deliver great performance consistently, well, you must act on it. You must work on your leadership skills to be able to lead your team to high performance, consistently.
What leading a team entails
Being a leader of a team is no small task. No matter how small the team is, it is still a challenge. While leadership styles vary, and each leader grows to have a style of their own, here are some key principles that may be useful to understand and practice.
Know your people: Spend a lot of time understanding and knowing the people on your team. It may not be possible to know everything about everyone. It may not be necessary either. But almost everyone has a solid reason why they come to work – apart from having to earn an income. When you know what that reason is for a person, you can lead that person better.
Constantly champion the team’s goals: While you make an effort to know each person on your team personally, spend a lot of time talking about why the team exists in the first place. What is the team trying to achieve? Why? And what is the role of each team member on the team’s mission? Call for all-hands meetings, take the team out for a coffee, conduct team-building activities – but at every forum, without fail, champion the team’s goals. When you make the story of the team bigger and more powerful, members on the team begin to see the bigger picture too.
Make it a fun-filled, results-oriented, workplace: Nobody likes monotony. And no one likes to work in a boring, unhappy, workplace. So, while you drive results, induce a lot of fun in the team’s daily routine. Encourage people to talk about each other. Set up weekly activities that foster teamwork, that are creative in nature, that are off-beat and which can energize everyone. Over a period of time, you will see how your team’s culture evolves. Simply, when people are having fun working together, they perform better.
Communicate transparently and effectively: It is the leader’s primary responsibility to ensure that everyone on the team understands the three key objectives of the team:
- What are we here together for?
- What must we do to achieve this goal? Importantly, what must we not do on this team?
- What will we get when we achieve our goal?
Talk about health and wellness regularly: Just as health is crucial for notching up great sports performances, in the business world too employee health and well-being is very important if a team must deliver high-performance. A good leader is never a slave driver. So, first, take care of your own health. And also talk about health and well-being constantly with your team members.
This includes the mental health of colleagues. Have healthcare professionals visit your workplace and deliver talks on good eating habits, on managing fitness routines in a busy work week and on leading a life free from stress, anxiety and burnout. Remember: Only if you are fit can you lead your team. And only if your team is fit can they deliver the results you are looking for.
Sharpening your leadership skills
Here are some tips on how you can improve your own leadership skills:
Read: It is natural that as you grow in your career, you have lesser time to develop yourself. But this is where you have to work smartly. Set aside a few hours every week to catch up on your reading. Read up on your industry, on leadership and on how other companies and leaders are getting their teams to perform. The internet offers a lot of quality content on these topics. Not all of what you read may be immediately relevant to you. But some of it will be. And that reading will more than adequately compensate for the time you invested in the process.
Network: Don’t get bogged down to your desk and to managing the affairs of your team. Reach out and meet the people in your industry or other peers in the business world. Meet them in person. Social media conversations cannot give you the insights and perspectives that an in-person meeting can. Treat this as an investment in yourself.
Spend quality time with your family: This may sound counter-intuitive. How can spending quality time with the family enhance your leadership skills? Well, it sure does. Because family nurtures you and rejuvenates you. And when you are looking at your work from a new, fresh, perspective, you tend to perform better.
Learn a new skill: Sign up for a program that can help you learn a new skill in a structured way. This could be something to do with business or even otherwise. The key here is to be a non-stop learner. When you are learning, you are curious. And staying curious is very important for a good leader.
Not everyone gets to be a leader of people. It doesn’t matter what work you do or how many people you lead. If you are leading people, embrace the opportunity wholesomely and make your team great.
People also ask:
1. How do you build strong leadership?
A strong leader should have integrity, self-awareness, courage, respect, empathy, and gratitude. They should learn and be able to communicate and delegate effectively.
2. What are the core skills of a leader?
There are 4 leadership skills needed by leaders at every organization, regardless of role, industry, or location: self-awareness, communication, influence, and learning agility.
3. What are the fundamentals of leadership?
The fundamentals of leadership are:
Self-awareness: Understand your behaviour’s impact on organizational outcomes.
Communication: Effectively communicate goals and inspire trust.
Influence: Be comfortable persuading, promoting, and delegating.
Learning agility: Know when to change course, and help others to do so.