One of the most essential qualities when it comes to being a successful leader is knowing how to lead yourself. Usually, courses or talks on leadership skills just focus on what it takes to inspire and motivate others. However, before you can lead others, you need to develop emotional balance, self-confidence, and integrity.
Of course, there are many different ways to be a good leader. Some effective leaders are charismatic and easily inspire others. Other leaders have a more bureaucratic approach and focus on rules and policies. Whereas some are good team leaders.
Whatever the leadership style, one thing is clear – the best leaders need to know how to manage themselves.
In this article, you will find out 3 of the essential skills that all great leaders need. This will help you know how to positively influence others and develop a good working environment.
One of the most important leadership skills is to develop emotional balance. At its name implies, being balanced emotionally means not going from one extreme to the other. Emotional balance requires acknowledging your emotions and then acting appropriately. So, the best leaders don’t hide their emotions at all costs in a stoic sort of way.
What is acceptable when it comes to showing your emotions when you are in a position of leadership?
It is obvious that bursting into tears when something goes wrong or when the business faces problems is not going to instil any confidence in your emotional abilities. Even though getting upset shows you are human, lashing out may even make employees nervous or unsure of the company’s stability. So, in these circumstances, a measured, calm approach is definitely required.
When it comes to expressing excitement and hope, good leaders know that their reactions can inspire others. Even something as simple as saying to an employee that you are excited about their idea is much better than just acknowledging it as a good idea.
In essence, make sure that employees and your subordinates see you are emotionally invested in them and the company.
For some people, developing self-confidence is one of the hardest skills to master. This is not a natural trait of everyone and it can be a challenge to draw the line between bragging and being sure of your own abilities.
What does it mean to be a self-confident leader? The best way is not to tell everyone about your accomplishments but let them speak for themselves.
You also need to take some time out to realise what your strengths and weaknesses are. This knowledge will give you the confidence to quickly identify situations and make decisive actions based on your strengths. When employees see that you are not indecisive and don’t drag your feet, they will also be motivated to act.
Another aspect of being a self-confident leader is to know the strengths and weaknesses of your team. This will help you choose the right person for the task and be confident in your decision.
When it comes to earning trust and respect from those under your leadership, integrity is the most important quality. To highlight how important integrity is, a 2016 survey on the most important leadership traits found that 75% of employees rated employer integrity in the top spot. The second most important quality was fairness and third was decisiveness.
Of course, what one person perceives as fairness can be perceived in a different light by another person. So, to act with integrity, make sure that your employees fully understand your company’s core values. Then act in a manner that puts them first.
When you have to make a difficult decision, acting in line with your company’s values and putting the interests of employees first will show you lead with integrity.